£100,000 compensation for Maya Forstater after employment tribunal rules in her favour

A tax expert, Maya Forstater who lost out on a job, has been awarded compensation of almost £100,000 by an employment tribunal.

Maya Forstater was awarded payment after her claim that she was discriminated against and victimised at work.

Ms Forstater works as a researcher for the Centre for Global Development (CGD) think tank. The company is based in the US but has an office in London.

The tribunal found that CGD had equated Ms Forstater’s beliefs to bigotry in public comments and had contributed to this abuse on social media. Furthermore, they had shunned her by not renewing her contract in March 2019 after she stated that biological sex cannot be changed.

Oppressive and high-handed conduct had been used by the think tank during the court battle with Ms Forstater, said the tribunal.

The tribunal agreed with Ms Forstater that her views on the ‘immutability of sex’ were a ‘philosophical belief,’ and this is protected by equality legislation. This should also be tolerated in a pluralist society. 

The judgement, which was handed down by three judges at the London tribunal, has awarded Ms Forstater compensation of £91,500 and interest of £14,904.31.

The compensation is for injury to feelings, loss of earnings and aggravated damages caused when CGD refused to renew the claimant’s contract.

Ms Forstater commented that while she was happy with the significant compensation, she was also very pleased that it was all over. She feels that this case sends a message to other employers, namely that this was a clear case of discrimination and like any other discrimination case, the compensation can be significant.

Going forward, organisations need to rethink their approach to equality and diversity to be sure that they are in fact following the law, rather than following what activists tell them.

Author JK Rowling voiced her support for Ms Forstater before the tribunal. Ms Rowling later tweeted to congratulate Ms Forstater.

Ms Rowling wrote ‘Congratulations to @MForstater, who receives more than £100k in compensation from @cgdev. They were found to have discriminated against her due to her gender critical beliefs which as the case has shown are worthy of respect in a democratic society. #SexMatters.’

Ms Forstater, who is the co-founder of the Sex Matters campaign group, opposed government proposals to reform the Gender Recognition Act which allows people to identify as the opposite sex.

Employment judge Andrew Glennie, referring to the renewal of the claimant’s contract, stated that complaints of direct discrimination because of belief were well founded, as was the complaint that she was victimised when the company removed her from their website.

Ms Forester thanked everyone who had supported her case, and above all her family who have been put through hell over the last four years.

‘No children should ever see their mother smeared as a bigot and a potential harasser, which is what international media did.’

Ms Forstater commented that her case had exposed institutionalised discrimination, routine abuse and smearing of ordinary people with ordinary beliefs concerning the material reality of sex. 

The final judgement has brought her some measure of closure and vindication because it required the CGD to compensate her for loss of income as well as injury to feelings.

A CGD spokesperson said that the CGD has and will continue to strive to maintain a workplace which is safe, welcoming, and inclusive to all who work there.

The spokesperson concluded that the resolution of the case would allow the company to focus exclusively on their mission which is to reduce global poverty and inequality through economic research which drives better policy and practice.


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