Telling someone to ‘grow up’ is NOT age discrimination, tribunal rules after hairdresser sued boss

Telling someone to ‘grow up’ is NOT age discrimination, tribunal rules after hairdresser sued her old boss for criticism when she was 16

An hairdressing apprentice who took legal action after a colleague told her to ‘grow up’ has had her claims thrown out by a tribunal.   

Jasmine Stunell, 20, was a trainee at Leo Bancroft salon in Weybridge, Surrey, where she claims she was ordered to ‘pull herself together’ while being sick in a toilet at work.

Following her departure, Miss Stunell launched claims for age discrimination and constructive dismissal against her employer – all of which have been rejected. 

Jasmine Stunell was an apprentice at Leo Bancroft salon in Weybridge, Surrey

The panel said: ‘The tribunal does not find the words ‘grow up’ and ‘pull yourself together’ in themselves are related to age and can be said to anyone and particularly to someone older who is acting in a childish way.’

Ms Stunell had started working as a stylist at the Leo Bancroft Salon in Weybridge, Surrey, in January 2017. 

She studied towards a vocational qualification on Saturdays, before becoming an apprentice seven months later.

At the end of her three month probationary period, owner and manager Leo Bancroft raised some issues with Ms Stunell’s performance.

The panel heard she would hide during the day, be late, use her mobile phone and had a poor general attitude, including towards clients.

But her performance improved and she was officially made an apprentice in February 2018. 

Leo Bancroft salon is said to have a ‘very good retention record’ with 70 per cent of the stylists having been fully trained by Mr Bancroft.

Ms Stunell then alleged that a colleague told her to ‘grow up’ and to pull herself together through a toilet door while she was being sick, the panel heard.

But the tribunal accepted the colleague’s version of events when she denied saying this, adding that she has a phobia of people throwing up so would have been ‘out the door’.

In addition, Ms Stunell claimed that in an online group chat used by the salon, a colleague had said she should be replaced with someone more reliable.

The tribunal found this was also not age related and would have been said about any member of staff who was late or disappeared without explanation during the day.

The heard was told Ms Stunell walked out of work on a number of occasions due to personal matters but Mr Bancroft was ‘very supportive’ as he knew she had a difficult home life.

After she walked out and resigned, he texted her to say she had ‘huge potential’ and a ‘bright future ahead’, the panel heard. 

Ms Stunell also claimed she was not allowed to take breaks but there was no evidence of this.

The tribunal, which was held remotely dismissed all her claims. It also found she had not been bullied or discriminated against at work.

The panel, headed by employment judge Anne Martin, concluded: ‘In all the circumstances, the tribunal finds that Ms Stunell’s claims are not well founded and are dismissed.’


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