In Meister v Speech Design Carrier Systems GmbH, a case decided before the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), the question of whether a worker who claimed that she met the requirements of a job advertisement but was unsuccessful can get disclosure of the successful candidate’s file was considered. Ms Meister, a Russian National, applied for the role of software developer but she was rejected without an interview, although it was accepted that her level of experience did meet the requirements of the post. She brought sex, age and race discrimination claims and argued that the production of the successful candidate’s file would demonstrate she was more qualified.
The CJEU decided that Article 8(1) of the EU Race Equality Directive should not to be interpreted to mean that a person in Ms Meister’s position was entitled to have access to the successful candidate’s file. It was, however, also important to ensure that a refusal to disclose by the employer did not undermine EU Directives. The refusal was likely to be a factor when seeking to establish facts from which the inference of direct or indirect discrimination may be drawn. That was a matter for the National Court.
This is a sensible decision. Claimants need only establish facts that point to discrimination, inferences can then be drawn by the Tribunal. We think this gives Claimants enough protection.
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