The Equality Tribunal
Employment Equality Acts 2000 to 2011
EQUALITY OFFICER'S DECISION
(Represented by Cooney Solicitors)
Date of Issue: 19 August 2013
File No. EE/2010/624
Employment Equality Acts - discriminatory treatment - race - conditions of employment - dismissal - prima facie case - failure to attend an oral hearing
1. Dispute and delegation
1.1 This dispute concerns a claim by Mr. Mariusz Bogacz (hereafter "the complainant") that he was discriminated against on the grounds of his race in relation to his working conditions and that he was discriminatorily dismissed from his employment with Mr. Liam Duffy (hereafter "the respondent"). The complainant alleges that the respondent treated him less favourably on grounds of his Polish nationality, in that, he was not given a contract of employment and he was discriminatorily dismissed from his employment on grounds of race.
1.2 The complainant referred a claim of discrimination to the Director of the Equality Tribunal on 10 August 2010 under the Employment Equality Acts. On 24 June 2013, in accordance with his powers under section 75 of the Acts, the Director then delegated the case to Valerie Murtagh- an Equality Officer - for investigation, hearing and decision and for the exercise of other relevant functions of the Director under Part VII of the Acts on which date my investigation commenced. As required by Section 79(1) and as part of my investigation, I proceeded to hearing on 10 July 2013.
2. The hearing
2.1 Both parties were advised of the date of the hearing by ordinary and registered post on 25 April 2013. The complainant nor the respondent attended the hearing and the Tribunal has not been informed of any exceptional circumstances excusing their failure to attend. I am satisfied that section 85A clearly places an onus on the complainant to establish a prima facie case of discrimination before an investigation can proceed.
3.1. In accordance with Section 79(6) of the Employment Equality Acts 1998-2008, I issue the following decision. As part of my investigation under Section 79 of the Act, I am obliged to hold a hearing. I find that the complainant's failure to attend such a hearing was unreasonable in the circumstances and that any obligation under Section 79 has ceased. As no evidence was given at the hearing in support of the allegation of discrimination, I conclude the investigation and find against the complainant.
19 August 2013