More legal news
02 December 2004 | Cara Whitehouse
A female purchaser who won a sex discrimination case may eventually get only half her hoped-for £500,000 award.
Kim Hope had worked for waste management company Sita UK since 1998 but was sacked as head of procurement in September 2003.
She was replaced by a man with no procurement qualifications on triple her £35,000 salary.
In August an employment tribunal in Newcastle upon Tyne found Sita UK guilty of sex discrimination, unequal pay and unfair dismissal (see News
, 26 August).
Hope's award, in what could be the largest for a sex discrimination case outside the City, was to have been decided in a second hearing in November.
But her solicitor, Stefan Cross, said Sita had appealed the unequal pay ruling, citing legal technicalities. Cross told SM: "Although Sita UK has accepted the two rulings of discrimination and unfair dismissal, its appeal against unequal pay feeds into the other claims and therefore could affect the compensation rewarded.
"If Sita is successful in its unequal pay challenge, Hope's award could be dramatically reduced. It could be cut by more than half."
But Cross said he believed the August tribunal had been correct in its judgement and saw no reason why Hope should not receive £500,000 if the appeal were unsuccessful. Sita's appeal is due to be heard early next year.