A mixed race child who brought a race discrimination claim as a result of being stopped and searched in Tesco has received £3,000 in settlement, this is the first settlement of this kind (we believe).
The unnamed child was stopped and searched at the Maida Vale Tesco store on 2 November 2013.
A retail assistant prevented him from leaving the store by grabbing his arm and taking him into an office in the back of the store.
The child was not told why he had been stopped, or why he was being held in the back office. The duty manager at the store joined the retail assistant in the office and subjected the child to a search. The search revealed the child was not in possession of any items belonging to Tesco, and A was permitted to leave the store.
The child’s mother contacted trade union GMB who later instructed solicitors to pursue a claim for race discrimination.
“My son was treated utterly appallingly. Doing nothing just wasn’t an option – there was no way that I could stomach Tesco getting away with how they treated my son because of his race. Getting reparation, and recognition for how they had wronged my son, was ‘like getting blood out of a stone’ but our efforts were worth it.”
Her son added:
“The way Tesco treated me was unacceptable and for a while left me constantly unnerved whenever I was in a store. I think it is absolutely fantastic that we have been able to show them this is not acceptable and that they cannot get away with these kinds of actions anymore.
The child’s solicitor, Nick Webster from Leigh Day, said:
“It is unacceptable to treat somebody differently because of their race.
“Our client was particularly upset by what he felt to be the physical, high-handed manner of Tesco’s conduct and has been left scarred by the incident.
“Our client hopes that this case will encourage others, who have been subjected to this type of treatment, to have the confidence to speak out.”
A Tesco spokesman said:
“Everyone is welcome at Tesco so we take any allegations of this nature extremely seriously.
“As has already been disclosed, this person was stopped as the colleague believed they had been shoplifting. We have agreed to settle the case with no admission of liability.”
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