A former armed response officer who received almost £1million from Police Scotland for victimization said the past few years had been “torturing” and no compensation could compensate for the pain.
Rhona Malone began her action against the force after a senior police officer said he did not want to see two female armed officers deployed together when there were enough male personnel on duty.
An employment tribunal heard how Inspector Keith Warhurst cited ‘obvious differences in physical ability’ and a ‘balance of testosterone’ as grounds for the decision.
When Malone challenged Warhurst, he denied being sexist and threatened to suspend her from her job for not acting in a “calm/restrained and controlled manner”.
The labor court also heard of other instances of sexist and misogynistic behavior, including Warhurst distributing images of topless women on an internal WhatsApp group, with Warhurst describing another officer’s pregnant wife as “a fat fucking bitch,” and a senior officer telling a female firearms officer to “fuck off” when she asked for a two-piece uniform instead of a coverall, to make it easier to use the restroom.
The court found that there was an ‘absolute boys’ club’ culture within the Armed Response Unit in Edinburgh where Malone had worked.
In its judgment in October last year, the court upheld Malone’s claims of victimization but dismissed his claim of direct discrimination.
Malone said no amount of compensation will ever “compensate for the pain or the sacrifices” she has made – including costs in the region of six figures – but hopes winning “would benefit many women now and in the future. ‘coming”.
However, she criticized both Police Scotland and the Scottish Police Federation, the body which represents rank and file officers, saying they had ‘failed’ her and ‘grossly underestimated my determination to recognize and accountable”.
Malone said in a statement to PA Media that his “quest for justice” had “entailed great personal risk”, adding that it was “unfortunately one that could so easily have been avoided”.
She said: “Finally I have put an end to what has been a harrowing and torturous few years, but which I hope will benefit many women now and in the future.
“It is important for me to say that if the people in positions of trust and authority who victimized and suppressed my quest for recognition and accountability had been honest, had shown moral integrity and empathy for my situation , so perhaps Police Scotland could have taken the opportunity to communicate and highlight a much more progressive and inclusive organisation.
“It would have empowered the police and made Scotland proud.”
Malone also said that if she had received “the care and support of the Scottish Police Federation, then perhaps Police Scotland would not have responded with contempt or attempted to suppress me and deny me justice”.
His comments came after it was revealed a settlement had been agreed with Police Scotland in which Malone would receive £947,909.07.
The settlement also includes a personal apology to Malone from Chief of Police Iain Livingstone.
In a statement released on Friday, the force apologized for “its poor response when a dedicated and promising officer raised legitimate concerns. The Chief Constable also underlined his personal commitment to leading change in policing in Scotland which promotes equality and inclusion to improve the experiences of all women, including our own officers and staff. .