Pop star Sting and his wife, Trudi Styler, were guilty of discrimination when they fired their chef after she became pregnant, a British employment tribunal has ruled.
Jane Martin, 41, worked for the famous couple as the chef at their home near Southampton, England, for eight years. Her duties included preparing food for dinner parties as well as their regular meals on a daily basis. However, Martin said when she became pregnant in 2005, she was not treated well. Styler made her work long hours and got angry whenever she wasn’t feeling well and wanted to take time off.
The hostility continued until April 2006, when Martin left her position. She claimed she had been wrongfully dismissed by Sting and Styler’s management company, Lake House Estate, because of her pregnancy.
The tribrunal agreed, finding Martin was a victim of sexual discrimination and wrongful dismissal. Though it was the management company that officially dealt with Martin’s firing, it found Sting and Styler were directly responsible.
“(Styler) is without a doubt the driving force manipulating others to perform her dirty work,” the tribunal said.
The amount the couple will have to pay Martin for compensation will be decided at a future hearing. However, they plan to appeal the decision.
“Jane Martin was always treated well and generously as an employee, and we remain stunned at her actions and at the verdict of the tribunal,” Styler told the Associated Press.