LONDON, England, Wednesday October 29, 2014 – Gillingham Football Club and its Dubai-based chairman Paul Scally have been charged with race victimisation by the FA over the dismissal of former Barbados international Mark McCammon after football’s governing body judged that its rules had been breached.
The retired striker, who signed for Gillingham for £2,500 a week in 2008, sued the club after being fired in 2011 amid claims he was treated differently because he was black.
McCammon told an employment tribunal in 2012 he had been “put through hell” and had not been given an answer over why he was treated differently to other players.
The 6ft 2in striker claimed the League One club had refused to pay for private medical treatment that would have helped him regain fitness following a serious injury.
The 36-year-old nevertheless revealed that an injured white team-mate was flown to Dubai for treatment by an eminent physiotherapist at the club’s expense.
In contrast, Gillingham offered McCammon the operation on the state-run National Health Service (NHS) rather than privately, which he described as “completely out of character” for a Football League club.
Adding the proverbial insult to injury, he said he was then fined two weeks wages when he sought the advice of a private consultant.
McCammon claimed his wages were also docked when he failed to turn up for training in heavy snow, during which driving conditions were “treacherous,” while some white players were told they were not required to attend.
McCammon, who also played for Millwall and Doncaster Rovers, was subsequently ordered to attend a disciplinary hearing and later received a letter saying he was dismissed.
Meanwhile, Gillingham chairman Scally described McCammon’s claims as being made “maliciously and without foundation,” adding that the club had not had to deal with an allegation of racism in 18 years.
The club lost an appeal last September and the original decision was upheld with the award of £68,000 compensation to McCammon.
Now the Football Association says Gillingham breached FA Rule E3 by failing to act in the best interests of the game, and/or bringing the game into disrepute by committing an act of race victimisation by dismissing Mark McCammon.
Gillingham FC and its chairman have until November 14 to respond.