Ian Hunter, 20, has epidermolysis bullosa, a genetic disorder which manifests itself in blisters on his hands, neck and feet.
Hunter was initially turned away from Bar Rio in Gilling-ham, Kent, because he was wearing trainers. But when he returned wearing different shoes, he was refused entry because of the skin condition on his hands.
‘The good news is that only a minority of people have this attitude and we have laws in place ensuring that the perpetrators face the consequences of their actions’ – Bert Massie, DRC
When he called the next day to complain about his treatment, the manageress said he had been barred because they thought people might attack him or may not want to drink from a glass he had used.
Hunter turned to the Disability Rights Commission (DRC) for legal representation, which pursued his case under the terms of the Disability Discrimination Act. The club’s owner, World View 2000, settled out of court for 2,000.
Bert Massie, the DRC’s chairman, described the be-haviour of Bar Rio’s staff as “inexcusable”.
“It proves that such prejudice is still with us,” he said. “The good news is that only a minority of people have this attitude and we now have laws in place ensuring that the perpetrators face the consequences of their actions.”