Bartender sues Hamilton Princess

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  • Legal action: bartender launches legal action against Hamilton Princess

    Legal action: bartender launches legal action against Hamilton Princess

The man who brought controversial speaker Ayo Kimathi to Bermuda has launched legal action against Hamilton Princess claiming he was discriminated against.

David Lee Tucker was fired by the hotel in December 2015 for “serious misconduct”.

But Mr Tucker alleged he was mistreated during his ten years as a bartender at the hotel.

He claimed he was dismissed because of his place of origin, his union activities and his links to Mr Kimathi.

But hotel owner Hamilton Properties Limited asked the court to strike out the claims and said the allegations were frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of the courts.

Mr Tucker alleged in his complaint that his affiliation with Mr Kimathi was a reason for his dismissal, along with his position as a shop steward, a spinal disability, his age and his Bermudian status.

Mr Tucker organised a presentation by Mr Kimathi in Bermuda three months before he was sacked. The presentation, promoted as a talk on African culture, sparked outrage.

Mr Kimathi’s speech was described by Chief Justice Ian Kawaley as “an unfiltered message of hate” that targeted gay people and white Europeans.

Mr Kimathi was later placed on the stop list.

Both Mr Tucker and Mr Kimathi launched an appeal against the decision, but the ban was upheld by the Supreme Court.

In two hearings before Shade Subair Williams, the Registrar of the Supreme Court, the hotel sought to strike out Mr Tucker’s claims against it.

Ms Williams’s ruling said: “On the case pleaded by the defendant, the plaintiff’s termination resulted from serious misconduct.

“However, the plaintiff alleges that he was mistreated during the course of his employment and that the true reasons for his dismissal were muffled behind what was stated in the written termination notice.”

Ms Williams’s ruling, released on Monday, struck down Mr Tucker’s claim for unfair dismissal because of jurisdictional issues and a wrongful dismissal claim was struck out by agreement between the parties.

Mr Tucker’s claim that he was discriminated against due to his age was also dismissed because there was no reasonable cause of action disclosed.

But Ms Williams said complaints that Mr Tucker was discriminated against on the grounds of disability and place of origin would be heard in front of a court.

She added that several claims of breach of contract would be also allowed to proceed.

These include allegations that the hotel failed to provide adequate training and support staff, did not institute a minimum three-day work week and changed Mr Tucker’s written job description without consultation.

It is The Royal Gazette’s policy not to allow comments on stories regarding court cases. As we are legally liable for any libellous or defamatory comments made on our website, this move is for our protection as well as that of our readers.

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