IT manager wins race discrimination case against Daimler Chrysler

An IT manager has won a race discrimination claim against his employer Daimler Chrysler after months of racist slurs, which...

An IT manager has won a race discrimination claim against his employer Daimler Chrysler after months of racist slurs, which culminated in him being made redundant.

Khalid Jayyosi, 29, was asked by his colleagues if he was a bomb maker, compared with 11 September terrorists and told to “go back to Sangatte". He is in line to win up to £200,000 in compensation.

Jayyosi is Palestinian by birth but has lived in the UK since 1993. He had held several IT jobs without incident before taking up the post of head of IT research and development at Daimler Chrysler’s Milton Keynes base.

He was made redundant in June 2002 - 10 months after he joined the firm. The tribunal found Daimler Chrysler guilty of race discrimination, and concluded that Jayyosi was treated as he was purely because of his Palestinian origins.

A spokeswoman for Daimler Chrysler said the company was “very disappointed” with the outcome of the tribunal, but said the company would take on board the suggestions it made and would “learn from the experience”.  

Daimler Chrysler claimed Jayyosi was made redundant because of “structural changes” in his department. However, the spokeswoman could not say if any other staff had been singled out for redundancy.

The case follows a similar incident last November where two German IT consultants complained of racial abuse at Motorola's UK HQ in Swindon. Jens Puhle and Heinrich Sawatzki claimed colleagues gave them Nazi nicknames, goose-stepped around the office and taunted them about the Second World War.

Makbool Javaid, a partner in the employment law practice at law firm DLA said, "The message of the Daimler Chrysler case and other such cases is that IT departments need to be subjected to the same robust practices that apply to everyone else," said Javaid. "It illustrates that employers need to not only have policies in relation to diversity but need to implement them and ensure that managers have training and understanding of discrimination issues."

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