03 September 2010 #Employment
A Britain`s Got Talent contestant who claimed she was discriminated against at her audition, has failed to get her case heard at employment tribunal. She was reportedly suing for £2.5 million.
Emma Amelia Pearl Czikai, who suffers from cervical spine neuritis, had filed Tribunal proceedings against Simon Cowell and the show for disability discrimination, as they allegedly knew about her condition and made a "fool" out of her on TV.
Ms Czikai appeared on the show in May 2009, singing You Raise Me Up. Her performance was heavily criticised and Ms Czikai blamed the poor performance on being made to stand outside in the cold weather as she waited for her turn to perform.
Ms Czikai insisted the conditions "were unfair" and asked producers not to show the footage. The show refused her request and instead invited her to appear on the ITV2 spin-off show Britain`s Got More Talent, allegedly promising to make an explicit link between that performance and her original audition on the show`s website. The show failed to do this.
Ms Czikai alleged that by showing the footage of her original performance without showing the improvement she was subjected to harassment as she felt degraded and humiliated.
A pre-hearing review was held to determine whether the Tribunal had jurisdiction to hear the claim, and it was decided that they did not. The Tribunal reached that decision, according to Ms Czikai, because she had not filed her claim within the statutory 3 month time limit, and because neither Simon Cowell, nor Britain`s got Talent were her employer for the purposes of the Disability Discrimination Act.
Ms Czikai said she was not disappointed with the decision as she had done all that she could to bring the dangers of reality TV to the public`s attention.