Ex university employee in claim of race discrimination.
Byline: Pete Swingler News Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org
A CROATIAN employee has made legal claims for race discrimination and harassment against Coventry University after complaining staff upset her with remarks about the Balkan War.
Tija Savie, of Allesley, Coventry, sought approval at a Birmingham Employment Tribunal preliminary hearing to go ahead with a total of 11 complaints of race discrimination and harassment against the university at a full tribunal hearing.
But David Maxwell, representing the university, successfully applied to have some of the claims struck out after warning they had little or no prospect of succeeding. Tribunal judge Ron Broughton withdrew some of the claims, but he agreed the others could go ahead at a full tribunal hearing next February.
Nearly all the claims were only referred to only by numbers in legal documents which were not made available to the press. But Mr Broughton mentioned the allegation by Ms Savie that work colleagues upset her with remarks about the fighting between the Croats and the Serbs.
The Croatian War of Independence happened between 1991 and 1995 with Croats in conflict with the Yugoslav People's Army of Serbia.
The conflict was described as a "ethnic cleansing" and about 140,000 died.
"She says in her witness statement that she felt herself caught up in a sensitive situation and moved away from the conversation," said Mr Broughton.
The tribunal was also told that Ms Savie who was born in Croatia, was upset by one allegation about people from overseas being called "strangers" and that she was upset when asked why she kept looking out of a window when being spoken to.
Mr Broughton had warned Ms Savia at the start of the hearing that because the 11 claims had little or no prospect of succeeding, a deposit of PS1,000 per claim could be imposed before the full hearing took place - making a total of PS11,000. Ms Savie who is no longer at the university, told the tribunal she did not have enough money.