Wednesday, August 26, 2009

British police officer tells employment tribunal he wasn't promoted because of his dyslexia

From BBC News:

A senior police officer has told an employment tribunal that he was "victimised" because he is dyslexic.

Ch Insp Phillip Haynes (pictured), 42, of Gloucestershire Police, says he was passed over for promotion after he raised the condition with his bosses.

Mr Haynes claims a letter detailing extra time he needed to pass his superintendent exam prejudiced the promotion board against him.

The force told the hearing in Bristol that they had tried to help Mr Haynes.

Victoria von Wachter, representing Gloucestershire Police, said the force had done a lot to assist Mr Haynes during the selection process.

Mr Haynes, of Newnham-on-Severn, said he first became aware that he might have been dyslexic when he was 12.

After twice failing the interview stage for promotion to inspector, he sought help from a dyslexia expert who wrote to Gloucestershire Police asking for special allowances to be put in place for Mr Haynes in his day-to-day duties and in future interview situations.

Mr Haynes said he thought this communication "caused the [promotion] board members to decide that I was not fit to be a senior police officer".

He said he felt "victimised" after his next promotion application was failed at the paper application stage.

He was also unhappy at subsequently being moved from being an acting superintendent back to being a chief inspector.

The former soldier, who joined the county's constabulary in 1989, said: "I have found my treatment to be extremely distressing."

The hearing continues.