What does this UK case have that a similar US case does not?  In the US, this plaintiff would have no federal legal right to sue for sexual orientation discrimination or harassment (although many states and municipalities in fact do have laws prohibiting such discrimination/harassment).

In the UK case, the plaintiff claimed that her boss “bombarded her with pornography and made crude comments about her sex life.”  He apparently  “always put[] the Babe Channel programme on the television showing women’s private parts and [made] digs and comments about it to me often with an audience. … It showed women and women having sex as well as men and women having sex.”

He commented that he “hope[d] it is a noose” when another worker said he had something for her.  (We have found that nooses are fairly common in racial harassment cases in the US, but never heard about it in other contexts).

Plaintiff said that “I felt dirty, distressed and belittled for being gay. … I was going through hell. … The pressure Steve was putting me through left me suicidal. If I had got a gun I would have shot him.”

The Court held that these acts “had the effect of violating her dignity and creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating and offensive environment. …”

Counsel for each party had different takes:  plaintiff’s lawyer said that “This strikes at the heart of her identity. She didn’t want to talk about being a lesbian with her work colleagues. She was made to feel ashamed of her sexuality,” while the company lawyer said that “There was a culture of banter and strong exchanges at work and she gave as good as she got.”