Wed 12 Jul 2023

Employment Tribunal awards over £100,000 in compensation to Maya Forstater for gender critical belief discrimination

In Forstater v CGD Europe and others ET/2200909/2019 (30 June 2023), a tribunal awarded over £100,000 in compensation to Ms Forstater who had been found to have suffered direct discrimination due to her expression of gender critical beliefs.


The tribunal had previously found, at a liability hearing, that Ms Forstater had suffered direct discrimination on the ground of belief. Her Visiting Fellowship at the Center for Global Development (CGD) was not renewed and she was not offered an employment contract because she had expressed gender critical beliefs, which some of her colleagues had reported to CGD as being transphobic.

This followed on from a previous Employment Appeals Tribunal judgment where Ms Forstater’s gender critical beliefs were held to be protected as a philosophical belief under the Equality Act 2010 (EA 2010).


At a subsequent remedies hearing, on 30 June 2023, a tribunal awarded over £100,000 in compensation to Ms Forstater for the discrimination she had suffered.

The award included:

£25,000 for injury to feelings

The tribunal found the discriminatory acts were significant because the acts demonstrated CGD did not want to be associated with Ms Forstater, which subsequently affected her status within CGD and the wider professional sphere.

£2,000 in aggravated damages

It was considered that the public statements made by CGD were oppressive. It was noted that these overstated judicial observations made in the previous tribunal decisions and equated her belief to bigotry.

£14,000 for loss of earnings

The non-renewal of Ms Forstater’s visiting fellowship amounted to this sum.

£50,000 for loss of chance and loss of earning capacity

The tribunal noted this sum was considered as roughly matching the earnings Ms Forstater would lose from one lost year of her current work.

£14,778.47 as interest

What should employers be aware of?

This case highlights that employers need to be aware of the extent of belief protection under the EA 2010 and how to react if there is any conflict between rights conferred under the EA 2010 and opinions. While the manifestation of a belief may, in certain circumstances, amount to misconduct, allowing an employer to dismiss or decide not to renew a fixed-term contract simply because of a protected belief itself is likely be prohibited.

The tribunal’s calculation of remedy also emphasises the importance of employers adopting a cautious approach towards employees in similar circumstances. Potential tribunal awards can be significant and, in this instance, the tribunal specifically referred to the employer’s actions towards the employee when setting out the remedy for injury to feelings and aggravated damages.

How can MacRoberts help?

If you have any queries about what this decision means for you or your business, please get in touch with a member of our Employment Law team or contact us here. You can also read our most recent Employment Law newsletter here.

This article is not and should not be taken as legal advice, it is for general information only.

This article was co-written by Daniel Cormack, Trainee Solicitor.

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