Former drag queen awarded £30,000 in unfair dismissal case

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Former drag queen ,Dean Awford, has been awarded £30,000 for unfair dismissal from a high end furniture store.

Employment Judge David Kearsley found that Mr Awford had been unfairly dismissed by store manager David Gray.

Mr Awford, known on the club circuit as, ‘Dean the Queen,’ was awarded £30,000 compensation, as well as £118 in unauthorised deductions and £67 holiday pay.

However, claims that Mr Awford suffered sexual orientation discrimination and sexual harassment were dismissed.

Awford claimed that his boss David Gray continually directed homophobic insults at him and humiliated him in front of customers.

Awford told the employment tribunal he had made no secret of his sexual orientation but Gray would call him a “poof and “faggot”, along with referring to him as “she”.

He said: “During my employment I was subjected to continual harassment due to my sexual preference.. . Mr Gray was an extremely volatile and abusive employer.

“[On one] occasion I was in a white suit and he said ‘look at you, you faggot.’ Faggot is a word I don’t like and I would complain verbally about what he was saying to me.”

“Many homosexual males would have found the comments made by Mr Gray offensive. The tribunal is not condoning Mr Gray’s behaviour,” Judge Kearsley said.

“Equally many women would have found the comments about their underwear on the chiller offensive.

“But we have considered the character of the claimant and the absence of any complaint during the period of employment.”

He continued: “The tribunal doesn’t accept that Mr Gray made any comments that were particularly capable of constituting harassment.

“He referred to himself as Dean the Queen and would recount details of his sexual activity.”

“I am delighted that the unfair dismissal claim was upheld. I’ve known all along that my treatment at work was wrong,” Awford told The Telegraph.

“I only hope Mr Gray will ensure that no other employees are treated so shabbily in future. I hope I have helped improve his employee relations ahead of the festive period.

“I suppose as far as Gray’s At Northwick are concerned then I could be the Christmas fairy.”