David Stephenson acted for the successful claimant, Hayley Burden, in her claim for indirect sex discrimination against Hampshire Constabulary, who had withdrawn her from the promotion process after her flexible working request had been refused.
Mrs Burden, the primary carer of two young children, was one of ten successful applicants promoted to the rank of sergeant. She was posted to Aldershot police station, which was over an hour commute from her home. Mrs Burden applied for flexible working because she was unable to arrange childcare at 05:30 to enable her to begin work at 07:00. When her flexible working request was refused, Hampshire Constabulary told her that unless she accepted her posting, she would be considered as having withdrawn from the promotion process.
The Employment Tribunal found that Hampshire Constabulary indirectly discriminated against her by refusing her flexible working request and failing to post her to a Sergeant vacancy that accommodated her childcare needs. The ET found that she was unable to take up her posting because of her child care responsibilities. The ET ordered Hampshire Constabulary to pay £11,621 for injury to feelings, to further pay aggravated damages, and to reinstate her to the rank of sergeant. Hampshire Constabulary also paid loss of salary and pension from the date her promotion should have taken effect, and £1200 in costs.