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Parking Inspector Loses Diabetes Discrimination Claim

Parking inspector loses diabetes discrimination claim

A parking inspector has lost his discrimination claim after claiming his employer failed to provide enough time or a private place to treat his diabetes.

The Anti-Discrimination Tribunal of Tasmania found the Hobart City Council didn’t treat the inspector less favourably than other workers.

Parking inspector suspended for poor performance

John Hindley made the disability discrimination and trade union activity discrimination complaint after the Council suspended him for poor performance.

He alleged discrimination on the basis of:

  • his Type-1 diabetes,
  • a back injury,
  • and his involvement in a union.

Hindley claimed discrimination because his supervisor refused to grant his request for extra rest breaks to stretch his back.

Additionally, he said he needed time to check his blood sugar levels, and inject himself with insulin.

Furthermore, he argued he wasn’t given a private place to inject the insulin to avoid embarrassment in front of work colleagues.

He also claimed the Council failed to provide a sharps bin to dispose of used needles.

Finally, he argued discrimination based on his union activity as a delegate.

Claim dismissed by Anti-Discrimination Commission

The Anti-Discrimination Commission rejected Hindley’s claim.

As a result, he appealed to the Anti-Discrimination Tribunal of Tasmania.

However, the tribunal agreed with the original decision and rejected each of the arguments Hindley put forward.

What the tribunal found

Firstly, the tribunal found the Council gives all workers an additional five minutes prior to their lunch, morning and afternoon tea breaks to attend to personal medical needs.  

Furthermore, Hindley could request extra time on an on-needs basis, by asking his supervisor using a two-way radio or mobile phone.

Secondly, the tribunal found the Council did provide Hindley with a personal sharps container on the day he requested it.

The tribunal found Hindley never requested a private place to inject his insulin, therefore, discrimination did not happen.

Furthermore, the the tribunal found Hindley could have found privacy by using a toilet cubicle.

Finally, the tribunal rejected Hindley’s claim of discrimination based on his union activity.

It noted a number of other parking inspectors who are union delegates had been promoted in the organisation.

Therefore, it ruled the Council had a valid reason to suspend him.

As it turns out, surveillance footage showed Hindley:

  • talking on his personal mobile phone,
  • talking to other parking inspectors
  • and walking past expired metres and not issuing tickets.

Overall, the tribunal found Hindley had not been treated less favourably than other workers, therefore he did not suffer discrimination.

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