Woman wins discrimination case after being called ‘pain’


The nickname was visible in a sharable Microsoft Excel document (Image: PA)

A woman has won a workplace discrimination case after being listed as ‘in pain’ on a spreadsheet.

Ubah Jama, who worked for the NHS, has been called a “troublemaker” after she complained that a colleague had thrown a test tube at her.

The Somali-born worker said she faced racial discrimination for two years while working at the Barking Havering & Redbridge University Hospital NHS Trust.

The colleague who threw the test tube was a white Canadian who lost her temper over a perceived lack of help, a court has been told.

Jama also complained when another colleague was suggested for a three-day training course, but she was overlooked for the same promotion

Her treatment by other colleagues culminated in the nickname being viewable by different people from two hospitals via a shared Microsoft Excel document, the court heard.

It referred to her as “pain.”

A colleague admitted to being responsible for the nickname, but said the tag was automatically entered into the document from a home computer.

She said it was a “personal joke about the computer’s performance”.

Jama told the tribunal she wanted her name removed, but the request was ignored by her boss.

Her colleague admitted the joke was unprofessional during the tribunal and insisted that she remove the phrase from her own documents but did not remove it from Jamas.

Tribunal Judge David Massarella said he was “satisfied that the original insertion of the term paininthearse into the documents was innocent. . . We felt the position on the failure to remove it was different [Jama’s] Documents’.

This “crossed the threshold of harassment,” the judge said, adding “that as a result, Jama created an offensive, even humiliating, environment” in which Jama could work.

She will now receive compensation after the court ruled that she was “marginalized and disfellowshipped because of her race”.

The amount of damages Jama will receive will be determined at a future hearing.

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https://metro.co.uk/2023/03/08/woman-wins-discrimination-case-after-being-called-paininthearse-18410161/ Woman wins discrimination case after being called 'pain'

Justin Scacco

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