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'TOKEN WHITES' AT LAMBETH WIN COMPENSATION

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Two white former education officers at Lambeth LBC have each been awarded a four-figure sum in damages after an emp...
Two white former education officers at Lambeth LBC have each been awarded a four-figure sum in damages after an employment tribunal found they had suffered race and sex discrimination from black female colleagues.

The Guardian (p9) reports that the tribunal ruled that Deborah Ugbechie, then a principal awards officer, had treated the men as 'token whites' and led a campaign in the department to ostracise them.

Ian Short and James Monaghan accepted Lambeth's offer yesterday. Both were also found to have been constructively dismissed when they were forced to take redundancy in 1996.

At the hearing last year, the tribunal heard how Ms Ugbechie, who has now left the council, and others in the department humiliated the men and treated them as inferior to eight black women colleagues.

The tribunal was told that the men were excluded from meetings, ignored when important decisions were made and forced to do trivial tasks while being denied days off allowed to their colleagues.

The tribunal said it accepted the men's argument that 'there was a deliberate policy ... led by Ms ugbechie and supported by her black female staff, to exclude or trivialise the roles of white male persons'.

Chris Myant, spokesman for the Commission for Racial Equality, said cases of anti-white discrimination amounted to a 'small handful' of the 1,700 racial discrimination cases that go to tribunals every year.

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