Varnish calls former British Cycling doctor Freeman as witness in sex discrimination case

Jess Varnish will call on controversial former British Cycling doctor Richard Freeman to provide evidence on Wednesday to the Manchester Employment Tribunal as part of her sex discrimination case against British Cycling and UK Sport.

The hearing started on Monday and is expected to continue until December 17. The track sprinter is fighting for compensation, claiming unfair dismissal after she was dropped from Great Britain’s elite track programme in 2016 and so missed out on the Rio Olympics.

The tribunal will ultimately decide whether Varnish was self-employed or an employee, and she could be owed the full legal obligation of her contract. If Varnish is successful at proving she was an employee, all parties would face a tribunal in 2019. A source close to Varnish said that she is not interested in a cash settlement, rather, she is “frustrated that neither UK Sport nor British Cycling have changed the grey situation that athletes still remain in.”

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Following Varnish’s dismissal from the track programme, she accused former technical director at British Cycling Shane Sutton of using sexist and discriminatory language toward her, a claim that was supported by several other athletes.

Sutton resigned amid the controversy, which resulted in a full, independent investigation into the culture of British Cycling’s high-performance programme. He was later cleared of eight of the nine allegations.

On Monday, both parties spent the first day at their employment tribunal reviewing each other’s documents. BBC Sport reported that British Cycling and UK Sport have 4,000 pages up against Varnish. Varnish is set to call three witnesses to give evidence: Freeman, along with her partner Liam Phillips, a former GB athlete, and her agent James Harper.

You can read more at Cyclingnews.com

Source: Cyclingnews

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