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Tuesday 5 December 2023 Dublin: 4°C
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Equality Tribunal

Polish Tesco worker awarded €12,000 for racial discrimination after taking a day off work

Polish man Tomasz Jankowski’s case before the Equality Tribunal related to a number of incidents of unfair treatment.

THE EQUALITY TRIBUNAL has awarded a former Tesco’s employee €12,000 after he was disciplined for failing to show up to work.

Tomasz Jankowski, who is from Poland, complained after receiving a final written warning in relation to the incident of non-attendance.

He felt that he had been discriminated against due to his nationality as other Irish employees had not been treated in the same fashion.

In his case he complained that he was refused time off work in a number of instances – one of which involved the birth of his child – and that he had been treated unfairly in the workplace.

On one occasion in December 2012 Jankowski requested that he be allowed to go home as he was feeling unwell. This request was turned down – despite it being claimed that other employees had been allowed to go home in similar circumstances.

The complaints relate to incidents that took place at a store in Sligo and occurred between 2010 and 2013.


Tesco responded to the complaint by stating that Jankowski was employed as a General Assistant working at nights and that in his contract it is specified that annual leave is to be taken as two weeks in the summer, a week in spring and the rest on occasional days throughout the year.

Jankowski was refused time off work on December 26 and 27 in 2012. He felt this was unfair discrimination against himself. However Tesco stated the reason for the refusal was that other members of staff had already been given these days off.


The Equality Officer upheld complaints from Jankowski that he had been discriminated against for not having his complaints considered, his treatment while sick at work and, his treatment relating to a holiday request for January 2013.

It was felt that an award of €12,000 was “just and equitable” for the discrimination that had been suffered.

Read: Colin Farrell writes personal plea to Irish voters to support marriage equality

Also: Speed van worker awarded €28k after petrol attack

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