Woman ‘gagged and tied to chair’ by workmates takes fight to employment tribunal

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A civil servant who says she was tied up and gagged by colleagues is taking her former employer to court.

Marine Scotland worker DeeAnn Fitzpatrick was photographed taped to a chair in a shocking picture that went viral in 2018.

She was later sacked by the Scottish Government over claims she lied about the incident.

Ms Fitzpatrick is pursuing a whistleblowing claim for unfair dismissal at an employment tribunal, as she claims she was subjected to the ordeal because she drew attention to misogyny and abuse in the office.

But bosses said she lied about the timing and nature of the incident, which they deemed to be "high jinks", writes the Daily Record.

The tribunal has now rejected her bid to pursue sex, age, race, religion and disability discrimination claims.

In a written judgement on his decision, employment judge Alexander Kemp stated it was "in the interests of justice" to refuse the discrimination claims.

She will now launch a case based on whistleblowing at an employment tribunal next month in a bid to be given back her job by Marine Scotland.

Ms Fitzpatrick told the tribunal colleagues in Marine Scotland's Scrabster office called her a "f***ing Canadian r****d", "wh**e" and "old troll".

She said: "I begged to have a work environment that was safe, to be able to go to work and do the job I was being paid to do, and that environment was not provided by my employer.

"I was left to my own defence within an office that was feral, in an office that they knew was misogynistic and racist.

"And because I spoke out, I was dismissed and I am now in an employment tribunal."

"My client's position is that it was done entirely with her consent."

Solicitor Andrew Gibson said that forensic expert found that the photograph was taken in 2009, not in 2010, which contradicts Ms Fitzpatrick's claim it was done in response to her blowing the whistle.

Mr Gibson said: "That's a significant falsehood which had significant consequences for two employees at Marine Scotland who were questioned by the police."

Marine Scotland has been approached for comment.

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