Calling a man ‘bald’ is sexual harassment, court rules

Discrimination against a man because he is bald is tantamount to sexual harassment, a court has ruled.

Famous bald men: Vin Diesel, Alan Shearer and Ross Kemp (Getty Images)

The verdict came from a tribunal considering the sacking of Tony Finn of the Yorkshire-based British Bung Company, which makes items used by the brewing industry.

It was prepared by a panel of three men, who referred to their own baldness in the report.

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Mr. Finn was fired in May 2021 from the company where he had worked with an “unblemished record”.

What was said in court?

In a statement before the tribunal heard in Sheffield over six days in February and April, Mr Finn said: “I was working on a machine which I had to cover and await a professional repair. The covers were taken off, and that was it.” obvious that Jamie King had done so.

“When I spoke to him about it he started calling me a stupid old bald **** and threatened to deck me out. Fearing for my personal safety, I retreated to the nearby office of Ady Hudson, the supervisor. Jamie continued his tirade of threats and abuse at the office door. This was observed by Ady.”

The report said Mr King accepted that he had called Mr Finn “a bald guy” and threatened to “knock him out”.

Mr Finn then refused to return to work “due to circumstances of danger which he reasonably believed were serious and imminent”.

He wrote a statement to his employer on paper with the West Yorkshire Police head on it, as his son was a police officer. The company then accused him of trying to intimidate them and fired him.

What did the verdict say?

The panel’s verdict states: “In our opinion, there is a connection between the word ‘bald’ on the one hand and the protected sexual characteristic on the other.

“Miss Churchhouse was right in her assertion that both women and men can be bald. However, as all three members of the tribunal will vouch for, male baldness is far more common than females. We think it’s inherently related to sex.”

The verdict also related to an earlier case in which a woman had been sexually discriminated against when a comment was made to her about the size of her breasts.

It continued, “One might think that such a remark was inherently related to sex. However, a similar remark can be made about men with gynecomastia.

“Following Miss Churchhouse’s analysis, therefore, a complaint of sexual harassment made today by a person in the position of plaintiff in the in situ case would fail on the basis that it is possible for men with the condition to be subjected to the same remark (just as bald women may be subjected to comments such as Mr King’s), although far more women than men will be subjected to such harassing treatment.

The panel will meet to decide compensation for Mr. Finn after he wins his lawsuit alleging wrongful dismissal, wrongful dismissal and sexual harassment.

A version of this story was originally published by our sister title Yorkshire Post Calling a man ‘bald’ is sexual harassment, court rules


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