North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust has said it has “learned many lessons” after it was ordered to pay £115,000 to a nursing chief who was told she was from the “wrong colour and culture”.
Dr Sarina Saiger was unfairly dismissed from her assistant director of nursing post at Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle and the West Cumberland Hospital, Whitehaven, in 2008, a tribunal ruled last year.
The mixed race executive was said to have been told by the then director of nursing that she was the “wrong colour and culture” for Cumbria.
North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust denied the allegations at the tribunal and argued Dr Saiger had already made a number of complaints in the health service and had accepted compromise agreements with other trusts.
The trust apologised after she successfully claimed racial discrimination and unfair dismissal.
Yesterday, Dr Saiger was awarded £115,000 compensation and the trust was left to pay a £218,000 legal bill.
Trust chief executive Carole Heatly said: “The trust is pleased this lengthy case has come to a conclusion for all concerned and as an organisation we are now able to move on.
“Again, we would like to offer an apology to Dr Saiger for the distress that this case has caused.
“The trust has learned many lessons from this case and embedded them.
“Dr Saiger has been awarded £115,000 by the remedies hearing. She had claimed £1.3m. As this is paid by the public purse, it provides a good outcome for patient care in north Cumbria.”
A trust spokeswoman added a new chief executive and board were in place following the incident with Dr Saiger.