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WRC Found Employer Liable for Racial and Sexual Harassment

posted 1 month ago

FactsVanessa Rodrigues Linhan v Carechoice ADJ-00044371 concerned a complaint under the Employment Equality Acts 1998-2015 (“the Acts”) to the Workplace Relations Commission (“WRC”).  The Complainant was employed as a Health Care Assistant with the Respondent in a care home for a period of roughly five months.  Her complaint relates to three incidents of harassment the Complainant experienced while in the Respondent’s employment working the night shift. The incidents involved two patients, Patient A and Patient B.

The Complainant was racially harassed by Patient A on two occasions, where he intimidated her and shouted racial abuse. The Complainant gave evidence under affirmation that he was an aggressive patient who would often leave the home and return home drunk. This behavior was a serious issue for the night shift workers. The first incident occurred on 20th December 2022 and the Complainant described feeling terrified and vulnerable, as there were not many staff on the night shift. She felt the staffing levels at night were not safe – comprising of three health care assistants and two nurses for forty-six patients. Her experience was that the nurses would not assist the carers so they would usually be alone working with the residents. The Complainant emailed HR about this incident. However, another incident occurred a few days later, where Patient A shouted at her in the kitchen calling her “a stupid black woman” and told her “to go back to her country”.

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