icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm

British holiday camp firm blacklisted Irish families based on their names, UK rights body rules

British holiday camp firm blacklisted Irish families based on their names, UK rights body rules
The operator of a chain of holiday camps in the UK has admitted it racially discriminated against Irish guests by trying to exclude Travellers or Gypsies from using their facilities, and kept a blacklist of Irish family names.

Pontins, which operates six holiday parks in England and Wales, admitted it engaged in a series of practices that discriminated against people with an Irish accent or surname.

The UK’s Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) said on Tuesday that Pontins monitored calls at its contact centre, blocking bookings from people with Irish accents, kept a blacklist of family names it deemed as “undesirable guests”, and used its commercial vehicles policy to exclude Gypsies or Travellers from its holiday parks.

Also on rt.com ‘Tone-deaf!’: Brits blast BoJo after reports he’s forming ‘charity’ to pay for fiancée’s No.10 makeover including ‘gold’ wallpaper

There were 40 family surnames on its internal blacklist, including Boyle, Keefe, Gallagher, O’Donnell, McGuiness, Murphy, and O’Reilly.

“It is hard not to draw comparisons with an ‘undesirable guests’ list and the signs displayed in hotel windows fifty years ago, explicitly barring Irish people and Black people,” said Alastair Pringle, Executive Director at the EHRC.

“Banning people from services based on their race is discrimination and is unlawful. To say that such policies are outdated is an understatement.”

Groups representing Travellers and Gypsies welcomed the ERGC ruling.

A spokesperson from Britannia Jinky Jersey, the corporate owners of Pontins, said the company has agreed to work together with the ERHC to improve staff training and to promote equality.

If the company fails to live up to a binding agreement it made with the EHRC, it faces further action from the agency under the UK’s Equality Act.

If you like this story, share it with a friend!

Podcasts