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Couple who were told by boss their trans son was ‘evil’ awarded £70,000 by employment tribunal

Maggie Baska May 29, 2021
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picture of Khi-Ro offices from Google Maps

A couple has been awarded £70,000 by an employment tribunal after their boss at Khi-Ro said the couple's trans son was "evil" and "going to hell". (Google Maps)

A couple who were told by a company director at Khi-Ro Limited that their trans son was “evil” has been awarded £70,000 by an employment tribunal.

The employment tribunal ruled both Vicky and Keith Brett were the victims of direct discrimination by Kate Forman, a company director for Khi-Ro Limited in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire.

Tribunal documents said the couple were told by Forman in October 2018 that their trans son was “evil and going to hell”. Forman also told the couple that they were “going to hell for supporting” their trans child.

The employment tribunal also found Forman’s husband, who is also a company director at Khi-Ro, “harassed” the couple because he “was silent and did not seek to intervene” when his wife was “abusing the first and second claimants in that way”.

According to the company’s website, Khi-Ro is a firm specialising in industrial track and trace systems, warehouse tracking and barcode labelling and scanning.

Metro reported Keith Brett worked as an engineer at Khi-Ro, and his wife Vicky was also an engineer as well as company secretary. Vicky was also a director at Khi-Ro at one point during her employment, according to the Companies House website.

The couple filed claims of unfair dismissal and direct discrimination after they left the company. The tribunal found Vicky was unfairly dismissed because she made “protected disclosures” about her trans son. It also ruled she was dismissed in breach of contract, suffered unlawful deductions from her wages and had not been paid for outstanding holiday pay.

The tribunal found Keith was also dismissed in breach of contract and suffered unlawful deductions from his wages and had not been paid for outstanding holiday pay.

Employment Judge Michael Ord ordered Khi-Ro to pay each claimant £35,000 each in “full and final settlement of all claims”. The tribunal document said this payment – which totals £70,000 – must be made within 28 days.

Vicky Brett told PinkNews that the Khi-Ro bosses “locked us out of the building” and their “email and internet sites”. She added the firm also “took me off the bank account without consultation or notification. Vicky also said one company director “logged in as me” on the Companies House website and “resigned me as a director and company secretary”.

She said she and Keith “volunteer with Inclusive Peterborough LGBT+ social group and run Inclusive Church Peterborough”. Vicky added: “The bullying led to Keith needing a year’s worth of counselling to recover and didn’t stop after we were locked out.”

PinkNews contacted Khi-Ro Limited for comment on the ruling.

This article has been updated to reflect additional comment provided to PinkNews by Vicky Brett. 

Related topics: employment tribunal, Trans

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