Professor Paul Ewart wins age discrimination case against university

first_img“It has never been a matter of money, it’s a matter of allowing people the dignity of continuing employment and providing worthwhile work in their life,” Ewart told a BBC reporter last week. Ewart,the former head of atomic and laser physics at the university, was awardedalmost £30,000 incompensation and re-employed as a senior lecturer. He will also retroactivelyreceive the salary he would have been paid from Oct. 1, 2017 to Sept. 30th,2020. Ewart, who is now 72, always planned toretire next September, but was forced out by the university before turning 70.As is outlined in the court decision, he will still retire in 2021 as plannedbut will work in the full capacity of his position until then. The University of Oxford discriminated against professor of physics Paul Ewart on the basis of age, after failing to renew his contract in 2017, according to an Employment Tribunal ruling last November. Ewart re-joined the faculty this fall under the orders of a remedy judgement issued earlier this month. The University did not respond to Cherwell’s request for comment. “It’s important for others that Icarry this battle on,” he said, in an interview with the Belfast Telegraph. “I really wasn’t doing it just for me. I’vegot what I wanted but I’m doing it for some of my colleagues who are engaged invery important work and should have the lawful right to keep working until theychoose to retire.”center_img The university has received significantcriticism about the policy and its ineffectiveness in promoting the hiring ofyounger, more diverse faculty members. Although the tribunal did not requirethe university to change its policy, it did dictate that it had failed toproperly justify the forced retirement age. While Ewart is now re-employed, he plansto continue to pursue legal action in hopes of changing the university’sbroader policy. While the ruling dictates that Ewart wasthe victim of age discrimination, it does not require the university to changetheir controversial Employer Justified Retirement Age (EJRA) policy, whichforces all employees at grade 8 or higher to retire before their 69th birthday.The policy, according to the University’s HR website, is meant to “enableinter-generational fairness, improvements in diversity, and successionplanning.” Image Credit: D.S. Pugh. Licence: CC BY-SA 2.0.last_img read more

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