A Ukrainian investment banker has won over half a million pounds in compensation for unfair dismissal and sex discrimination after she was made redundant following maternity leave.
Oksana Denysenko lost her job at Credit Suisse Securities (Europe) Ltd in December 2007, nine months after returning to work after giving birth to a daughter.
Before going on maternity leave, Ms Denysenko had been solely responsible for the emerging market in Ukraine. When she returned to work in March 2007, however, she was forced to share her job with the man appointed as her cover, Yuri Kostrobi.
Within months, management decided they could not afford to employ two people. Rather than reassign or lay off Mr Kostrobi, they chose to make Ms Denysenko redundant.
In reaching the decision, Ms Denysenko said that managers made assumptions about her ability to cope as a young, working mother. During the 30-day redundancy consultation period, for example, they told her that she would not be able to "put in the hours" required of her.
Ms Denysenko also cited other management abuses. These included being asked to carry out work unrelated to the duties she carried out before maternity leave - ostensibly in order to accommodate Mr Kostrobi.
Credit Suisse denied any wrongdoing, but the tribunal found in favour of Ms Denysenko and ruled she was subject to unlawful sex discrimination and unfair dismissal.
The London Evening Standard reports the panel decided that the new managers she returned to work under did not know her and wished to keep on her replacement, who they had worked with. Judge George Foxwell said: "We are satisfied the fact that the claimant had taken maternity leave contributed to her selection for redundancy."
The tribunal awarded the bank pay Ms Denysenko £535,000 in compensation.
- £500,000 for banker who lost job to man who covered her maternity leave (London Evening Standard)
- Unfair dismissal law (Findlaw.co.uk)
- Sex discrimination law (Findlaw.co.uk)
- Employment law Q&A (Community)
- Find an employment solicitor (Contact Law)