Categorized | Sports

Russian man refused job in sports shop over his ‘feminine manner’ and ‘gay looks’ – The Independent

A Russian man has been refused a job in a sports store because its management thought his “feminine manner” and being “too well-groomed” suggested he was part of the LGBTQ community. 

Eduard Zavyalov, whose surname was changed for security reasons, from Omsk, in south-western Siberia, never got to the interview stage when he applied for the sales consultant job. 

Instead, he received a letter from the shop’s human resources department informing him his “feminine manner of speaking and gestures as well as his appearance (excessive grooming and calling clothes) create a general impression that you are a representative of a sexual minority which promotes non-traditional sexual relations through behaviour and appearance”. 

The letter from the company’s HR manager was published in the Russian Omskinform website

The company added the decision was made on the basis of Russia’s so-called gay propaganda law, which bans the promotion of homosexual behaviour to minors. In this respect, it said it did not have “the moral and legal right” to employ Mr Zavyalov.

The law has often been used as a tool to target and intimidate the LGBTQ community in Russia and the European Court of Human Rights ruled in June that the law was encouraging homophobia and violated the right to freedom of expression. 

According to local media, Mr Zavyalov said that during the interview he was not asked about his work experience but only about his appearance. 

He told the Meduza news website that he had been offended by the incident. 

“I don’t know how I can be propagating anything. My clothes are reserved. The only thing that could probably confuse somebody is that my ear is pierced,” he said. 

The director of the sports store, Andrey Chistyakov, told Meduza that he had not taken part in writing the letter and that he had nothing against the LGBTQ community but that “there are certain requirements for the appearance of a salesman in a sport nutrition store and he does not correspond to them”. 

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He added that he was also concerned for the safety of Mr Zavyalov, suggesting that some of the customers could be violent. 

Mr Zavyalov decided to take the matter to court and sued the store for breaching the Labour Code of the Russian Federation, which states job applicants cannot be denied work because of their belonging to a social group. 

He said he hoped the store would be forced to apologise and pay him 50,000 (£642) roubles in damages. 

But according to the BBC, the Pervomaisky District Court in Omsk ruled the shop award him the compensation of 30,000 roubles (£385). 

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Russian man refused job in sports shop over his ‘feminine manner’ and ‘gay looks’ – The Independent,sports&output=rss
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