White curry factory worker was told to ‘go and work for an English firm’ by boss

Colin Sorby won his employment claim for race discrimination (Image: SWNS.com)

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A curry factory worker who was told to "go and work for an English firm" by one of his bosses has won an employment claim for race discrimination.

Colin Sorby, 31, complained he was racially harassed by his supervisor, Azheem Akhtar, after he was told he did not understand the recipes being made at the production plant because he was white.

He had worked at Mumtaz Foods in Bradford, Yorkshire, for around 15 weeks on a zero hours contract when the comments were made in October 2019.

After raising the issue about the "stereotypical" remarks at what is one of the UK's leading food manufacturers, his shifts suddenly dried up and he was effectively fired.

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Mr Sorby said his shifts dried up and he was effectively fired after reporting the comments
(Image: SWNS.com)

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He claims he was told he was being placed "on call" but was also asked to clear out his locker and hand in any company-owned property.

An employment tribunal hearing heard Mr Akhtar thought only British Asians should be allowed to work at the company which supplies food to Indian restaurants and supermarkets.

A judge then ruled the comments at Mumtaz Foods violated the production worker's dignity.

The tribunal upheld Mr Sorby's claims for racial discrimination, harassment and victimisation.

Mr Akhtar claimed he had been misunderstood and apologised for the remarks, but it was deemed since no disciplinary action was taken against him this was insufficient.

The judge said: "The effect of the comment was that due to the fact the claimant was not English he could not cook Asian food properly.

"This was a stereotypical assumption that was not predicated on any factual basis.

"Again, the context is everything. Mr Akhtar was seeking to justify why the claimant's employment should, effectively, be terminated."

After the judgement was published yesterday, Mr Sorby said: "I'm overjoyed with the decision, it's taken a long time to go through the whole process.

"It was deplorable [the way I was treated], as soon as I had made the complaint I was made to feel ostracised by Mr Akhtar and my allegations weren't taken seriously."

He continued: "It's not a good place to work, some of the workers were starting at 6am and finishing at 7pm five days a week and a lot of the staff are unhappy but won't speak out."

The amount of compensation to be awarded to Mr Sorby will be decided at a remedy hearing on a date to be fixed.