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Friday 28th November 2014
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Firearms Officer Wins £37,000 In Discrimination Case Against Met

Tuesday 2nd September 2014

A Met Police officer has won £37,000 in compensation after she was discriminated against for being a black woman.

Firearms officer PC Carol Howard won her case against her boss in the Diplomatic Protection Group.

Employment tribunal judges found Scotland Yard tried to deflect negative publicity around the case - by releasing details about her arrest for a domestic dispute with her estranged husband.

Judges at her employment tribunal were highly critical of the way the Metropolitan Police handled the case and called for its internal Fairness At Work scheme to be overhauled.

They also pointed out the fact that Ms Howard had not recieved an apology.

"Today is not a day for celebration," she said. "I have been put through a two-year ordeal in which I have been bullied, harassed and victimised simply because of my gender and race. No amount of compensation will ever make up for the hurt and upset that I have been caused.

"Since I won my initial hearing, the Metropolitan Police has failed to apologise to me or express any regret at the treatment I received. The only reaction from the police was to smear my name by releasing misleading details of my arrests.

"I am glad that the tribunal recognised that this leak of information was a dirty trick by the Metropolitan Police aimed solely at deflecting criticism from itself while simultaneously seriously damaging my reputation.

"The arrests were, I believe, also motivated by revenge simply because I made a stand against police bullying. Even today I am still having to fight to clear my name, in this regard, as part of this ongoing nightmare.

"I did not willingly seek this employment tribunal but had no other option to pursue it after various attempts to resolve the situation internally with the police proved fruitless. In that regard, I am pleased that the tribunal has recommended that the Metropolitan Police's internal complaints system is fully and independently reviewed.

"I worked extremely hard to become a firearms officer in the Diplomatic Protection Group, was proud of my job and always gave 100%. It saddens me that I found myself in this position through no fault of my own but I do hope that lessons can be learned from my case which will allow more officers, suffering similar discriminatory treatment, to come forward."

Her award included £25,000 for injury to feelings, £10,000 for aggravated damages, £350 for the financial loss of not being able to do overtime while she was off sick with stress and depression, a 5% increase of £1,767.50 for delays in dealing with the case, and £282.97 interest.