INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 20(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1969
- AND -
(REPRESENTED BY MR BRENDAN ARCHBOLD)
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Ms Cryan
Worker Member: Ms Ni Mhurchu
1. Withdrawal of warning
2. The Claimant contends that she was unfairly treated by the Company following an Investigation into alleged misconduct. The Employer denies the claim. It says that the Claimant attended two meetings and an appeal hearing and that the action they took was warranted.
On the 19thAugust 2013 the Worker referred her dispute to the Labour Court in accordance with Section 20(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969 and agreed to be bound by the Court's Recommendation. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 24thOctober 2013.
3. 1. The Claimant received a letter from the HR Manager headed ‘Invitation to Disciplinary Meeting’on the 24thMarch 2013.The Claimant only received 24 hours’ notice to attend this meeting.
2. At that meeting of the 24thit was brought to the Claimant’s attention that a member of management had reported her for use of abusive language. The Claimant stated that she had no recollection of using bad language but apologised if she had done so.
3. On the 9thApril 2013 the Claimant received a second‘Invitation to Disciplinary Meeting’scheduled for the 11thApril 2013. Following that meeting, on the 1stMay 2013 the Claimant received a‘formal written warning’to remain in effect for a period of 12 months.
4. 1. On 28thFebruary 2013 the Claimant entered the conference room and removed pastries that were purchased by the company for guests at a Board meeting.
2. The Claimant distributed these pastries to her work colleagues but in doing so used offensive language which was overheard by a member of management.
3. Following an investigation the Claimant was issued with a formal written warning to remain in effect for a period of 12 months. The formal written warning was upheld following an appeal by the Claimant.
The procedures followed by the employer in this case were fundamentally flawed to such a degree that no finding of misconduct warranting the imposition of a disciplinary sanction could be sustained. In these circumstances the Court recommends that the warning imposed on the Claimant be expunged.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
8th November 2013Chairman
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Ceola Cronin, Court Secretary.