ADJUDICATION OFFICER DECISION
Adjudication Decision Reference: ADJ-00001429
Complaint(s)/Dispute(s) for Resolution:
Complaint/Dispute Reference No.
Date of Receipt
Complaint seeking adjudication by the Workplace Relations Commission under section 13 of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969
Date of Adjudication Hearing: 17/05/2016
Workplace Relations Commission Adjudication Officer: Michael McEntee
In accordance with Section 41(4) of the Workplace Relations Act, 2015 and/or Section 13 of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969 following the referral of the complaint(s)/dispute(s) to me by the Director General, I inquired into the complaint(s)/dispute(s) and gave the parties an opportunity to be heard by me and to present to me any evidence relevant to the complaint(s)/dispute(s).
Complainant’s Submission and Presentation:
Awaiting dignity at work investigation report, this has not been furnished to me despite repeated requests, I have had to move to a different job location due to this. Management have not handled this situation fairly
Respondent’s Submission and Presentation
Respondent admitted that an Investigation under the Dignity at Work Policy had taken place in November /December 2014. At the date of the hearing on the 17th May 2016 the results of the investigation were still not available to the parties. The Respondent assured the parties that the Report would be available that week and apologised for the delay.
The Complainant’s transfer of location, which was initially temporary in October 2014, had been arranged by his local manager to remove the Complainant from the physical locale of the initial complaint. This was a pragmatic local Manager decision taken a as a means of ensuing the Complainant’s return to work from sick absence. It had now become permanent. The Complainant had requested that the transfer be made permanent in February 2015.
Section 41(4) of the Workplace Relations Act 2015 requires that I make a decision in relation to the complaint(s)/dispute(s) in accordance with the relevant redress provisions under Schedule 6 of that Act and/or Section 13 of the Industrial Relations Act, 1969.
Issues for Decision:
Delay in issuing Decision / Appropriateness or otherwise of Transfer of location
Legislation involved and requirements of legislation:
Industrial Relations Act, 1969.
The delay on some 17 months in issuing the results of the Investigation was excessive and in breach of all normal protocols in relation to workplace investigations. No coherent explanation was offered by the Respondent for the delay save for pressures on resources and staff involved in conducting the Investigation. Little consideration appeared to have been given to the impact both physical and mental on all parties in the investigation of the delay in issuing the findings. At the date of the hearing the results still had not been made available.
Accordingly as a measure of Redress and Compensation for the delays to the Complainant I award a lump sum in Compensation of € 1,500. As Compensation this is, subject to Revenue approval, tax free.
In relation to the transfer of location I considered the oral evidence of the Complainant’s Manager and accepted that he had acted at all times with the best interests of his staff at both locations to the forefront of his actions. The transfer was initially a pragmatic local action to get the Complainant back to work and the subsequent request for permanance in the new location from the Complainant appear to have been well considered by all parties involved.
However as the transfer was initially prompted by the circumstances surrounding the original incidents I have to find that the option to revisit this transfer decision has to be afforded to the Complainant once the Investigation Report is finally to hand. In the absence of the Report and its full consideration the transfer cannot be regarded as Permanent.
Dated: 29 July 2016