Mrs Scarth worked as a Cleaning Supervisor. She worked 40 hours a week and was paid more than other cleaning operatives.

On 22 June, Mrs Scarth was told by Mr Prime, the operations director, that savings needed to be made. He said that he would probably be reducing her hours from 40 to 10 a week. He did not speak to any other employees about cutting their hours.

Mrs Scarth claimed direct age discrimination, specifically that she was singled her out for having her hours reduced.


The ET found in favour of Mrs Scarth.

The ET held that that the claimant had been singled out, as she was the only one who was put on notice that her hours were likely to be reduced. The only other person who worked 40 hours a week was another employee called Carl (40 years younger than Mrs Scarth), but he was not put on notice that his hours would be reduced.

Atkins Gergory was unable to objectively justify its treatment of Mrs Scarth. It put forward a reason relating to "clean rooms" in its evidence at the hearing, but the tribunal found that the explanation was not credible.

Norwich Employment Tribunal, 25 June 2013, case no.1502430/12