Rogers & Norton News

‘Stroppy little teenager’ remark was harassment

Friday, August 16, 2013

Roberts v Cash Zone

An employment tribunal has decided that an 18 year-old was harassed on grounds of her age when her employer made various comments about her during performance meetings.

Cash Zone described her as a ‘kid’, a ‘stroppy kid’ and a ‘stroppy little teenager’. While the tribunal concluded that ‘teenager’ was an accurate description, it was held to have been used in a pejorative, rather than factual, sense.

Ms Roberts was awarded £2,000 in compensation. The amount can be put down to there having been a series of intentionally critical comments, as opposed to a one-off remark.

The reality of this case is that ‘teenager’ can conjure up plenty of stereotypical connotations. Could it have been found to have been an innocent and non-discriminatory reference to a person’s age? A mere description? When prefixed with ‘stroppy’ and ‘little’ then probably not.