UK

Paratroopers win Colchester barracks racial harassment claim

Hani Gue Image copyright PA Media
Image caption Former paratrooper Hani Gue claimed he was subjected to years of harassment

Two former British soldiers have won a racial discrimination claim against the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

Nkululeko Zulu and Hani Gue claimed years of harassment and took their case to an employment tribunal.

A judgement ruled they had been the victims of racist graffiti written on a photo of them in their barracks at Colchester in January 2018.

The tribunal ruled their other claims inadmissible, including the barracks having being decorated with Nazi flags.

The MoD is yet to comment. The men intend to seek compensation.

The pair served with 3rd Battalion (3 Para), based at Merville Barracks in Colchester.

The tribunal heard that someone had drawn a swastika, a Hitler moustache and a racist remark on photographs of the men attached to Mr Gue’s door.

Image copyright PA Media
Image caption Nkululeko Zulu said he now considered the army to be a racist institution

A written judgement said: “The conduct was unquestionably unwanted; the graffiti in question was of the most unpleasant nature, set out on Mr Gue’s personal photographs and was racially highly offensive.

“Notwithstanding the fact that the perpetrator is still unknown and was not before the tribunal to give an account of his/her motivation, we find that the carrying-out of this act was so unpleasant that it can only have been done with the purpose of violating the claimants’ dignity and creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating and offensive environment for them.”

Mr Zulu had told the tribunal that when he joined the army he held it in high regard but now considered it to be a racist institution,

The men’s solicitor Amy Harvey, of Banks Kelly Solicitors, said: “The claimants have succeeded in establishing their claim against the MoD that they suffered racial harassment during their time in the Army and that the MoD did not take all reasonable steps to prevent such harassment.

“The claimants intend to seek compensation and recommendations from the tribunal that the MoD implement better equality and diversity training within the armed forces.”

Source: bbc.co.uk

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