CALLING a female work colleague “love” or “hun” is demeaning, a judge ruled yesterday.
But men can be dubbed “lad” or “mate” as they are deemed nicknames.
Judge Pauline Feeney said: “Calling someone ‘mate’ or ‘lad’ is not a pet name. In our opinion it’s a nickname. They’re not demeaning.
“However, chick, babes, bobs, honey, hun and sweetie are all demeaning and infantilising ways of referring to women.”
Her comments came as funeral home boss Mike Hartley lost an appeal against his sacking.
A hearing in Manchester was told he made “unacceptable” remarks to colleague Rachel Anderton.
Married Hartley, in his 40s, allegedly asked about her “vital statistics”.
Ms Anderton, also complained that he once called her “Rachi-boobies”. Other staff claimed he vetted job applicants on whether they were “hot” or “fit”.
Hartley denied the allegations but was fired last year.
The panel found the firm in Blackpool had failed to follow proper process and ruled he had been unfairly dismissed.
But it said it was right to fire him, and refused him compensation. It also threw out his sex discrimination claim.
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