Jamaican-born Juliette Giscombe, the mother of comedian and radio DJ Richard Blackwood, has commenced legal action against the Hilton hotel group for constructive dismissal and alleged race and age discrimination.
Ms Giscombe, 57, of Streatham, worked as a telephonist claims manager at Hilton's flagship Park Lane hotel in London. She alleges managers "bullied and patronised" her, treated her like a "skivvy", and repeatedly overlooked her for promotion in favour of younger, less experienced white workers.
She said: "They could not conceive of a black person doing anything other than a menial role."
She joined the company in 1999 and says she first began to suspect bias in 2002. "I remained in the same position as I had been when I first started whilst other staff, most of whom I had trained and were white, moved on into better positions."
Apparently the situation made her so ill that she had no option but to quit her job last October.
She has now lodged a claim with Central London Employment Tribunal seeking £60,000 compensation for loss of earnings and injury to feelings.
Hilton has denied any wrongdoing. A spokesman said: "We are dedicated to being an equal opportunities employer and we place a strong emphasis on diversity and inclusion. A career with Hilton offers many opportunities for all races and genders."
- Richard Blackwood's mother: I was treated like a skivvy at Hilton (Evening Standard)
- DJ Richard Blackwood's mother in 'skivvy' row with Hilton hotels (Metro)
- Race and age discrimination laws (Findlaw.co.uk)
- Constructive dismissal law (Findlaw.co.uk)
- Constructive dismissal law news (The Solicitor)
- Find an employment solicitor (Contact Law)