A Case Study of Race and Sex Discrimination in the Workplace
The Anti-racism Myth: A Flight into the Cuckooâ€™s Nest. This comprehensive account of the Weaver v NATFHE/Bournville College case is now available and, together with the supportive documentation, can be downloaded for free at http://www.theplebeian.net. It is an account of the workplace harassment of an Asian woman lecturer at Bournville College..
This case exposed the limitations of the anti-racism and anti-sexism commitment of trade union officers and officials; and describes their actions in the college and in union committees. The main concern of these officers and officials, wrapped up in the robes of self-proclaimed anti-racists, was to protect their political associates and the image of the union â€“ a form of union patriotism overriding their alleged commitment to a racism-free society.
It deals with the attempts of these union bureaucrats to cover up the harassment and the effect this harassment would have on their image and interests; and it exposes the schemes concocted by the harassers and their collaborators to put pressure on the victim to abandon her complaint. The leadership of the Birmingham Labour Council, with overall responsibility for employeeâ€™s conditions in the cityâ€™s Colleges of Further Education, also tried to bury the case because of its implications to the city councilâ€™s purported anti-racism policy; and the Council employed a number of tactics against the complainant in its attempts to achieve this aim.
The legal case that arose out of the harassment (Weaver v NATFHE) caused a stir among trade unions, members of parliament and anti-racist organisations when the unionâ€™s racially discriminatory policy was exposed at Industrial and Employment Appeal Tribunals. The unionâ€™s policy was to defend harassers irrespective of the merit of the complaint because the tenure of the harasser was put at risk, and the union saw its principal responsibility to defend the harasserâ€™s tenure. This policy became applicable to all trade unions as a result of the decision at the EAT and caused considerable concern among other trade union leaders and Labour MPs and MEPs â€“ a policy extant in 2014; (see Harveyâ€™s Industrial Relations and Employment Law) A CRE spokesperson was quoted as saying of the policy that â€śThe victims of racial discrimination are now defencelessâ€¦Any union member guilty of racial abuse would know that the union would not help the victim.â€ť
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