Woman with Prosthetic Wins Suit against Abercrombie

August 14, 2009 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - A woman who says she was pulled from working on the sales floor and assigned to the stockroom of a London Abercrombie & Fitch because of her prosthetic arm has won a wrongful dismissal suit against the retailer.

The Associated Press reports that a British employment tribunal awarded law student Riam Dean $15,000 in compensation for injured feelings, lost earnings, and wrongful dismissal, but it rejected Dean’s claim that she was discriminated against due to her disability. Dean claimed she was “bullied” into quitting, according to other news reports.

The tribunal said Abercrombie & Fitch unlawfully harassed Dean when it refused to allow her to wear a cardigan to cover her prosthetic arm, saying the sweater violated the store’s “look policy.” The tribunal ruled that Abercrombie should have made an allowance for Dean’s condition.

Dean said she was asked by an employee from the company head office whether it would be possible “to keep you in the stockroom until the winter uniform arrives.” She said she later received an e-mail from management saying she had been “erroneously placed on the shop floor.”

Abercrombie has disputed Dean’s account of what happened and says it has a strong anti-discrimination policy, according to the AP.