Discrimination claim

A freelance journalist and media consultant is claiming sex discrimination against the makers of Channel 4 programme Faking It after he was dropped in favour of a woman, writes Wale Azeez.

A two-day tribunal hearing is scheduled for next month. Tim Arnold had initially considered suing production company RDF Media for breach of contract and sex discrimination through NUJ lawyers.

RDF engaged him last summer as a tutor to feature in an episode in the current series, to be aired on 24 February, in which a 29-yearold newsagent and mother of three from Scotland tries to pass herself off as a celebrity reporter after a brief period of training.

However, RDF later withdrew its offer of employment to Arnold, deciding to replace him with a female tutor and citing “editorial issues” for the change.

Emily Jones, an associate producer on Faking It, had earlier told Arnold he was “perfectly qualified” to teach the candidate.

However, she said the programme decided to recruit a woman tutor instead of Arnold to work with the already contracted Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan to avoid “a clash” of two male personalities.

“Considering you were perfectly qualified to teach her, we realised the only way we would get over this clash with Piers was to use a female tutor.

It’s a shallow reason, I know, but ultimately we have to think of the film we are making,” Jones told Arnold in an e-mail.

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