Vicarious liability places a liability on employers for any wrongdoing by their employees while carrying out their duties which lead to a personal injury to others. A recent case has highlighted this risk to Employers.
The Workplace Relations Commission considered a case where a mother of four attended an event at Trinity College Dublin which was staged by promoters MCD Productions. Prior to the event, the complainant emailed the promoters informing them she had a serious cancer condition and she needed to have access to their disabled toilet facilities. At the event she tried to access the disabled toilet but was prevented by a security guard employed by the promoters. Only after the intervention of a female colleague of the guard was, she allowed access but later on, when she tried again to access the disabled toilets, she was once again refused.
The Rights Commissioner ruled that the promoter had discriminated against the complainant and awarded her €7,000. The lesson here is to make sure your staff are fully trained and supervise them where needed. Giving them additional awareness training or even updates on things like discrimination laws is a good investment.