€63,000 has been awarded to a receptionist by The Equality Tribunal after it found she was discriminated against on the grounds of gender and race, and subsequently victimised.
Sylwia Wach, a Polish receptionist began working at the Waterford Travelodge in 2007 where she was initially employed as an accommodation assistant before becoming a receptionist one year later. Ms Wach went on maternity leave on 23rd March 2011 before returning on 21st September 2011.
On her return from maternity leave, Ms. Wach found her hours reduced, and also found that the company brought in a staff member from Cork to do shifts when Ms. Wach was available.
Her manager allegedly expressed annoyance when he learned that she had raised this matter with their HR manager. He further stated that Ms. Wach’s contract was only for 24 hours, and that therefore, that was all she was entitled to. Ms. Wach outlined that those 24 hours were “minimum hours”, and that, on agreement with the previous manager, she had been working full time for the last three years.
Her HR manager also accused her of not having sufficient English to work the job.