Press release: Black lecturer forces university to overturn discriminatory ‘zero hours’ contract


A black university lecturer who was left to rot on a ‘zero hours’ contract as white colleagues around her moved onto more secure and rewarding contracts has succeeded in forcing her employer to reverse its stand.

The lecturer, who cannot be named, was employed by a well-known London university on a contract that did not guarantee her any work. She had endured the onerous terms for six years before finally plucking up the courage to bring a claim for racial discrimination.

Her numerous requests to be moved onto the conventional ‘fractional’ contract had fallen on deaf ears and her multiple job applications had all been unsuccessful, despite the fact that she was demonstrably more qualified than the successful applicants.

IHRC’s legal department agreed to take up the employee’s case and help secure an out of court settlement which included a substantial lump sum in compensation for injury to feelings as well as a contract of employment containing the terms and conditions she was entitled to.

The case is the second in under a year involving alleged racial or religious discrimination by a leading university in the capital. Last July IHRC Legal successfully represented a Muslim lecturer who was given a workload over and above what was acceptable according to the university’s own standards for workload management. In contrast, white colleagues were given a substantially lighter workload and told that they should not take on more.

IHRC chair Massoud Shadjareh said: “At a time when prejudice and discrimination against ethnic and religious minorities is on the rise in Britain it is very encouraging to see IHRC Legal successfully redressing some off these injustices.”

IHRC Legal was established last year and specialises in discrimination, unfair dismissal, breach of contract and wrongful dismissal claims, unlawful deduction of wages, grievances, support during disciplinary and investigatory proceedings and representation at the Employment Tribunal.

It also works with businesses and charities seeking to develop their organisation through formalising their contracts of employment and workplace policies, as well as advising on ongoing HR issues.

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IHRC is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.

Islamic Human Rights Commission

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United Kingdom

Telephone (+44) 20 8904 4222



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