Navy in fresh appeal against equality ruling

HRH Princess Anne attends the 100th Anniversary of the Womens Royal Naval Service at a service of thanksgiving held inside Portsmouth Cathedral  
Picture Ian Hargreaves  (171557-1)

Princess Anne visits Portsmouth to mark 100 years of the Wrens

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THE Royal Navy has taken the case of a wren who won a discrimination claim against the service to the Court of Appeal.

The navy is unhappy with a ruling that its promotions procedure is out of date. It fears it could could open the floodgates to dozens of other claims and potentially cost hundreds of thousands of pounds in compensation.

The appeal comes after Chief Petty Officer Jacqueline Cartner won an Employment Tribunal against the service last year.

A judge ruled the HMS Collingwood wren, who is an MBE, was passed over for promotion to Warrant Officer because she is a woman and had opted not to serve at sea.

The judge blasted the navy’s promotions board as ‘primitive’ and called for reform.

The navy appealed against the decision last December at the Employment Appeal Tribunal court in London.

But the EAT judge upheld the opinion that the navy’s promotions procedure discriminated against CPO Cartner because of her non-sea going status.

The navy has now taken the case to the Court of Appeal.

A spokesman said: ‘The Naval Service was very disappointed with the Employment Appeal Tribunal’s findings and, on advice from MoD’s independent legal advisers, has sought leave to appeal both findings to the Court of Appeal.’

The navy is understood to have already spent more than £200,000 in legal fees on the case.

CPO Cartner’s husband Graham Beard, who served in the navy, said: ‘The situation is they must win this because the consequences are disastrous for them. ‘Two judges have ruled against them now and they should give up. But they are deluded and have been for years.’