ENTERTAINMENT

The 55-year-old transgender warehouse worker is suing FedEx over allegations that she was evicted by bullying colleagues


Delivery giant FedEx is being sued by a former warehouse worker who claims she was evicted by cruel colleagues who tortured her as transgender.

Toy Prendergast, 55, says she has been exposed to abuse, including being labeled as "F ****** Queer" at the company's headquarters in Stoke, Staffs.

Legal records allege the abuse by former work friends began when she began living as a woman.

Ms. Prendergast had previously worked as Custodian Paul for 12 happy years at the global company's UK headquarters in Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffs, before beginning her transition in 2017.

But the delivery worker, who quit her job in May, says she faced sick ridicule on her first day as her new identity.

She is now suing FedEx for constructive dismissal and gender reassignment discrimination.

Ms. Prendergast said, “I used to be one of the gangs than Paul – but when I came out as a toy, they hit me straight away. & # 39; My life was made hell. I was afraid to go to work – I was afraid for my safety.

Toy Prendergast, 55, alleges constructive dismissal and gender reassignment discrimination

Ms. Prendergast was working at FedEx in Newcastle, Staffs when she said the abuse had started

Ms. Prendergast was working at FedEx in Newcastle, Staffs when she said the abuse had started

This picture of Toy shows what she looked like before moving to work at FedEx

This picture of Toy shows what she looked like before moving to work at FedEx

“I was abused practically every day. I woke up crying and drenched in sweat every night.

“I just couldn't go on – I had too many thoughts of suicide. The very thought of going to work panicked me. Every day was like a recurring nightmare. & # 39;

In court files known as the details of the lawsuit, it is said that Ms. Prendergast was subjected to insults "almost every day" – a colleague "suggested intercourse movements on a handrail and other obscene gestures with the hands".

She also claims that she was forced to do heavy duty tasks expected by male colleagues that were "very difficult" for her as a transgender woman.

Ms. Prendergast of Cinderford, Glos, said she had previously had a "successful and happy career" with the company but was "broken" by the abuse of her former friends.

She said, “I felt like I was in third grade. When I went into the smoking room the guys I called my pals turned their backs on me.

Toy Prendergast when she was Paul

Toy Prendergast when she was a kid

Toy posted pictures of her when she was Paul before passing over at the age of 52 in 2017

Toy Prendergast kept a relative 16 years ago before moving on to a woman

Toy Prendergast kept a relative 16 years ago before moving on to a woman

“I was alone in the camp and when I complained, I was never taken seriously.

I just had to suffer in silence. I was shocked at the hostility of men who had previously seen me as one of the gangs.

“I've been called an abusive name all along. I tried to mess myself up and rise above it, but things got extremely difficult.

"I was scared of coming to work and couldn't sleep at night because I was worried about work the next day."

Ms. Prendergast's lawyers say she had to work in a "toxic and intimidating environment that violates her dignity".

The papers say: "Contrary to her hopes, her transgender status was the beginning of hostile and abusive discriminatory treatment, all the more hurtful given that many of the perpetrators were colleagues with whom she had previously worked without problems."

Toys in her FedEx T-shirt that she still has from her long previous career with the delivery company

Toys in her FedEx T-shirt that she still has from her long previous career with the delivery company

Ms. Prendergast, who suffers from severe anxiety and depression, claims she reported the abuse but bosses did not take it seriously. She found herself "exposed to another spate of abuse and alienation until she became a nervous wreck".

She said she feels no choice but to resign in May 2020 as she "feels too vulnerable to move on".

A court date has not yet been set. Ms. Prendergast says she has nothing more to lose from legal action.

It is waiting for a transition operation after its operation has been postponed during the lock.

Lawyer Fiona Almazedi, of Oakwood Solicitors in Leeds, West Yorks, said: "The case highlights the shocking hostility of trans women when they leave for work after transitioning – often from those they have worked with for years and who simply change their gender can not accept.

“The pain and distress that this causes is not to be underestimated and it is a real problem in jobs across the country. “Toy is a very brave woman, but it is sad that she was driven out of a job she has loved and done successfully for 15 years. "She just wanted her colleagues to support and accept her."

A FedEx spokesperson said: “We care for the well-being of all of our team members and we take all allegations of discrimination very seriously. As this is an ongoing case it is not appropriate for us to comment further. & # 39;