British Council boss sacked for calling Prince George symbol of 'white privilege’ denied payout

Angela Gibbins was fired from her job in August 2016 after posting comments on Facebook

Lydia Smith
Tuesday 07 November 2017 11:05
Ms Gibbins' comments were said to have associated her with a 'distasteful and personal attack on a small child'
Ms Gibbins' comments were said to have associated her with a 'distasteful and personal attack on a small child'

A former senior manager at the British Council who was fired for branding Prince George a symbol of “white privilege” has been denied compensation.

Angela Gibbins, the former head of global estates at the organisation which promotes British culture overseas, was dismissed from her job in August 2016 after comments she made on Facebook appeared in The Sun newspaper.

A photo of Prince George was posted by the band the Dub Pistols on its Facebook page, with the caption: “I know he’s only 2 years old, but Prince George already looks like a f***ing d***head.”

The band added: “Too much?”

Underneath the image, Ms Gibbins commented: “White privilege. That cheeky grin is the (already locked-in) innate knowledge that he is royal, rich, advantaged and will never know *any* difficulty or hardships in life.

“Let’s find photos of 3yo Syrian refugee children and see if they look alike, eh?”

Ms Gibbins believed her comments were only visible to her Facebook friends.

Although she was not responsible for the obscene remark about Prince George next to the photo, her comments provoked widespread criticism of the charity as well as calls for Ms Gibbins to be fired.

An internal investigation by the British Council, of which the Queen is the patron, found Ms Gibbins has inadvertently breached the charity’s code of conduct and brought the organisation into disrepute.

She then took the charity to tribunal, arguing she had been wrongfully dismissed and discriminated against because of her republican beliefs.

The tribunal, which heard the case in July, rejected her claims and said she had been fired because she had “associated herself with a distasteful and personal attack on a small child”.

“Clearly the claimant deserves some sympathy for her slip of judgement, but that does not mean the decision was unfair,” the report states.

A British Council spokeswoman said: “While we recognise the difficult nature of this process for all involved, we are pleased that the tribunal has found in our favour in relation to all of the claims.

“The British Council looks to act with integrity and respect in all that we do to promote the UK and our position in the world.”