Football secretary loses sex discrimination case

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Louise Mackenzie has lost her case against Hearts FC

By Cara Sulieman

A CLUB football secretary who took SPL side Hearts FC to an employment tribunal claiming sex discrimination has lost her case.

Louise Mackenzie, 34, alleged the club froze her out of her “prestigious” job because she was off ill following maternity leave, and claimed that the club would have acted differently if she had been a man.

She was upset that match-day working – and the chance to earn more pay – had been handed to another employee instead when she came back part time after having a baby.

But the Tynecastle side denied that was the case, saying match day work was never in her contract and insisting that the drafted other staff in for “operational reasons”.

“Dismissed”

The tribunal heard previously how the then manager Casba Laszlo had insisted on having full time cover for the duties before his eventual dismissal by the club.

The Employment Tribunal Service – which is still to publish its findings in full – told the parties yesterday that it has decided to dismiss Mrs Mackenzie’s claims.

In a letter, they said: “The unanimous judgement of the Employment Tribunal is that the claim fails and is dismissed.”

The reasons behind the decision by employment judge Susan Craig and her panel will not be released until a later date.

Mrs Mackenzie could not be contacted yesterday.

A spokesman for Hearts FC – where Mrs Mackenzie still works at their Riccarton training facility – said they could not discuss the matter.

However they added: “We are naturally delighted with the outcome of this case.”

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