INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
- AND -
SERVICES INDUSTRIAL PROFESSIONAL TECHNICAL UNION
Chairman: Mr Flood
Employer Member: Mr Pierce
Worker Member: Mr Rorke
1. Alleged unfair dismissal.
2. The worker concerned commenced employment with the Hotel as a housekeeper on the 26th of January, 1998. Her employment was terminated on the 16th of April, 1998. The Company argue that the worker walked off the premises on the 15th of April, 1998 and thereby dismissed herself. The worker's employment was based on a probationary period of 13 weeks.
The worker claimed that she had been unfairly dismissed and referred the matter to the Labour Court on the 15th of June, 1998 under Section 20(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 13th of January, 1999. The worker agreed to be bound by the Court's recommendation.
3. 1. The worker refutes management's allegation that she walked off the premises on the 15th of April, 1998. Before leaving the premises she informed the head housekeeper that she was unwell.
2. Management did not act in a manner in which the spirit and intent of the disciplinary procedure was entered into. The worker was dismissed without being afforded representation.
3. The worker was unfairly dismissed. She had 12 years experience working as a head housekeeper in another hotel. Her dismissal has caused her great embarrassment. In the circumstances the Union is seeking that a further opportunity of employment be afforded the worker on a probationary basis.
4. 1. On the 8th of April, 1998, the worker verbally confronted the manager of the hotel and walked out of work. She had verbally abused her supervisor on the previous day. Following these incidents the worker apologised for her bad behaviour and aggressive manner.
2. On the 15th of April, 1998, the worker walked out of work at 11.20 a.m. without reporting to management.
3. Management did not inform the worker that she had been dismissed. She was told that she would have to report to the manager before returning to work. She did not meet the manager.
4. Management informed the Union on the 27th of April, 1998 that the worker by her actions during her probationary period had dismissed herself. She was subsequently paid up to the 27th of April, 1998.
The Court considered the written and oral submissions made by the parties.
It is clear that events moved quickly during the 16th and 17th of April, but the Court is not satisfied that the claimant did in fact dismiss herself from the Company.
Taking into account all the circumstances of the case, the fact that the procedures were not followed, and that no evidence was produced in relation to dissatisfaction with the claimants work prior to April, The Court recommends as follows:-
The employee to be reinstated for a probationary period of 13 weeks.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
29th January, 1999______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Fran Brennan, Court Secretary.