An Irish charity boss who denies claims that he made anti-Semitic remarks in the presence of a Jewish worker will not publish his identity.
It has been alleged that the CEO said he was “rejected from the jury of a radio show” because the producers “wanted a Jew”.
However, the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) rejected the allegation.
Complaints were filed by an unnamed female employee who alleged that she was exposed to a “degrading, degrading and abusive” work environment and that she was the victim of a wrongful dismissal after lodging a discrimination complaint because of comments made to her .
These were rejected in a judgment published today.
Trial Officer Breiffni O’Neill issued an order to anonymize the names of the parties given the “potential impact” of the allegations on the charity’s employees, “particularly those of the CEO.”
The woman told the commission that on two dates in April 2019 she experienced anti-Semitic remarks that were “adverse to her health and well-being” and took sick leave.
She filed a formal complaint about the alleged incidents in July 2019, but a lawyer who conducted an internal investigation and released findings in November 2020 dismissed her complaint.
She told the commission that the lawyer investigating her claims “could not demonstrate sufficient knowledge of antisemitism” and argued that the investigator failed to apply an objective standard such as the UN definition.
The investigator “identified statements by one of her colleagues as anti-Semitic, but found no anti-Semitism,” she added.
She also said the investigator ruled out previous alleged anti-Semitic incidents that pointed to a “culture” — one of which was a comment by the CEO.
The woman said that on an unspecified date, the CEO said in her presence that he was “pushed off the panel of a radio show” because the producers “wanted a Jew.”
At a court hearing on February 9 this year, the CEO sworn affidavits that he had “never made such a remark” and that it was not uncommon to be “rejected” from a radio panel for many reasons.
The woman appealed the findings to a director of the charity, who confirmed the findings of the investigation.
The charity’s Des Ryan BL said the independent lawyer’s investigation was “exhaustive” and the complainant failed to make a link between the alleged treatment and her religion.
“The complainant’s case is based on speculation and unsubstantiated allegations,” Mr Ryan said.
In his decision, Mr O’Neill wrote that the investigator hired by the charity was a “renowned attorney” and there was no dispute between the parties as to the attorney’s expertise in employment law.
He ruled that the woman had an opportunity to present her account orally, produce supporting documents, make written submissions, and have an opportunity to appeal.
“The knowledge that the investigator demonstrated about antisemitism, which emerges from her analysis, was sufficient to arrive at her findings,” he said.
The applicant had argued that the investigator should have applied an “objective standard” or “definition” of anti-Semitism.
Mr O’Neill said she had presented “no evidence” to establish that such a “generally accepted standard” existed.
He noted that it was “incomprehensible” that the woman would not have objected to the CEO hearing the internal investigation’s complaint if her boss had actually made the remark.
“Given the clear conflict of evidence between the CEO and the complainant in relation to that remark and the fact that she failed to object to the conduct of the appeal, I prefer the CEO’s evidence and note that he does so under Consideration of probability did not make the comment,” Mr. O’Neill wrote.
He ruled that not renewing her temporary contract was a disadvantaging – but it was “solely due to the completion of the work” for which she had been hired and not “in response” to her WRC complaint.
“I find that the complainant has not provided prima facie evidence of victimization,” added Mr. O’Neill.
https://www.independent.ie/news/irish-charity-ceo-who-allegedly-made-anti-semitic-remarks-in-front-of-jewish-staff-member-wont-have-identity-published-41471808.html The CEO of an Irish charity who allegedly made anti-Semitic remarks in front of a Jewish employee will not publish his identity