Judge Jonathan Brain stated: “In our judgment, there is a connection between the word ‘bald’ on the one hand and the protected characteristic of sex on the other. Miss Churchhouse [the respondent’s representative] was right to submit that women as well as men may be bald. However, as all three members of the Tribunal will vouchsafe, baldness is much more prevalent in men than women. We find it to be inherently related to sex. (In contrast, we accept that baldness affects (predominantly) adult males of all ages so is inherently not a characteristic of age).”
Philip Cameron, partner at GQ|Littler, said: “This is an interesting but perhaps unsurprising decision, particularly in light of the use of an expletive in conjunction with the word ‘bald’. The law on harassment is very wide and captures a huge range of behaviour and comments in the workforce. The fact that an expletive was used too in this case made it worse, but the use of the word ‘bald’ would likely amount to harassment.”
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