INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
FALKON SECURITY SERVICES
(REPRESENTED BY MANAGEMENT SUPPORT SERVICES (IRL.) LTD.)
- AND -
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Mr McHenry
Worker Member: Mr O'Neill
1. Alleged unfair dismissal.
2. The worker was initially employed by the Company on the 14th of November, 1996, as a security officer on a part-time basis. He became a full-time security officer on the 26th of February, 1997, working a 6 day week, 3 week roster.
The Company claims that following his full-time appointment, the worker's attendance became increasingly bad. The Company supplied details of the worker's absences, claiming that they were often caused by the worker being drunk. There were also details of the worker making abusive telephone calls to the Company, and to the home of the Managing Director.
In May, 1997, the worker resigned from the Company but the abusive telephone calls continued. The Managing Director asked the Gardai to look into the matter, which they did. The worker wrote a letter of apology to the Managing Director.
Towards the end of summer, 1997, the worker again contacted the Managing Director asking for his job back as he was now "off the drink". He was subsequently re-employed on the 17th of September on a 6 months' trial basis.
The worker's attendance was good for a few weeks but then deteriorated again. In November and December, the worker supplied medical certificates to explain his absences. On the 12th of December, 1997, the Company decided that the worker was unsuitable for the job, and his employment was terminated. The Company claims that the worker continued to make abusive telephone calls for some time.
The worker felt that he had been unfairly dismissed and referred his case to the Labour Court on 26th of February, 1998, in accordance with Section 20(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. He agreed to be bound by the Court's recommendation. The worker did not attend the hearing on the 15th of June, 1998, but sent a written submission to the Court. In the submission, the worker claims that he was given a roster which required him to work very long hours which eventually had a bad effect on his health. His rate of pay was poor and working conditions were not good. The worker disputes that his attendance record was bad or that he was drunk when he telephoned the Company on the 20th of November.
3. 1. The Company was more than fair and reasonable when dealing with the worker. He understood the terms and conditions of his employment. The worker admits that he had a drinking problem and that it was the cause of his poor attendance. Despite counselling sessions and a verbal warning, the worker continued to be absent from work due to excessive alcohol.
2. The worker made numerous abusive telephone calls to the Company and the Managing Director in her home. Despite this, the Managing Director agreed to give him a second chance. When the worker's behaviour resumed its original pattern of absences, the Company was left with no choice but to dismiss him. He was paid all monies due to him.
The Court notes that the worker is seeking one week's pay in lieu of notice. On the uncontradicted evidence of the Company, the Court accepts that one week's notice of dismissal was given and payment made for that week.
The Court accepts that the worker was fairly dismissed and does not recommend concession of any element of his claim.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
2nd July, 1998______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Ciaran O'Neill, Court Secretary.