OFFICE OF THE DIRECTOR OF EQUALITY INVESTIGATIONS
Equal Status Act 2000
EQUALITY OFFICER DECISION NO: DEC-S2002-012
Mr Robert O'Brien
(Represented by Liam F. Coghlan & Co., Solicitors)
Scruffys Bar, Killarney Towers Hotel
(Represented by Mr Padraig J. O'Connell, Solicitor)
File Ref: ES/2001/27
Date of Issue: 8th March, 2002
Headnotes:Equal Status Act 2000 - direct discrimination - section 3(1)(a) - membership of the Traveller community ground - section 5(1) - refusal of service in the bar of a hotel - burden of proof on complainant to present prima facie evidence - no prima facie evidence presented.
Mr Robert O'Brien claimed that he was discriminated against contrary to the Equal Status Act, 2000, on the basis of his membership of the Traveller community when he was asked to leave Scruffys Bar, Killarney Towers Hotel, on 25th November, 2000.
The respondent claimed that the complainant was not discriminated against on the basis of his membership of the Traveller community. It claimed that the reason the complainant was asked to leave the bar was because his previous behaviour warranted it. It claimed under section 15 of the Equal Status Act, 2000, the holder of an authorisation which permits the sale of intoxicating liquor is permitted to refuse service where there are grounds for believing that someone may cause trouble and that the complainant was asked to leave on this basis. The respondent also claimed that the incident occurred on 18th November, 2000, and not 25th November, 2000, as claimed by the complainant.