I hope someone can offer me advice regarding below.
I started my new job on the 1st of June 2010 and was subject to a six month probationary period. Being a car driver was a ‘desirable’ element of the Person specifications - and not ‘essential’. Nor was it asked on my application form (have copies of both documents). It was raised during interview in which I stated a pay rise would help facilitate driving lessons but nothing more than that really.
August 24th I have supervision. Asked about driving, spoke about options – ‘TARGET’ date of 1st March. (have copy of this)
In between the six months period another colleague was receiving huge pressure to get her driving license too. I am now the only staff member that does not drive.
My manager told me in her office that driving is now ‘MANDATORY’ for all staff. She also called me in around three/four weeks ago stating ‘we may need to bring the target date forward’ so I told her I really could not afford it and reminded her of the target date. Nothing more was said.
6 months later (1st December) I have supervision. I am honest and state that I am struggling with paperwork/ workload (I am not alone – ALL staff feel this way!). Manager highlighted that I had not received support from team leaders and would ensure support is received. Support received from manager at time of supervision too. Everything is ok as far as I am aware. (have copy of this too)
Then on the 23rd of December I get handed a letter by my manager. Here it is:-
(dated 17th December 2010)
Following previous discussion we have had in your supervisions, you are aware that it is essential that you have a mode of transport i.e moped/motorcycle/car to enable you to carry out your role as a support worker.
As discussed at your supervision on the 24th of August, we agreed a deadline for the 1st of March 2011. Your probationary period was set to end on the 1st of December 2010, unfortunately taking this in to account I will be extending your probationary period for a further 3 month, giving you the opportunity to improve on the areas you are failing to achieve in currently.
Your probationary period will be extended to the 1st of March 2011 when your situation will be assessed you must understand your failure in meeting this deadline could ultimately lead to your employment being terminated.
If you have any questions or would like to discuss this further please do not hesitate to contact me.
The letter predominantly revolves around driving being the issue - the thing that bothers me most is that ‘I’ raised my paperwork/workload issue - not them – and there is no evidence that I am ‘FAILING’ other than my expectations of myself!! Someone has just passed their probationary period admitting to me that they had not even touched their paperwork. It feels they are using this as extra weight by saying ‘areas (plural) that I am failing to achieve in currently’.
I suppose the question is – can they do this? Well, they already have but can I do anything about it?
Should I not have received a new contract with driving being a prerequisite?
I feel really stressed out and hate going in to work now.
Hope someone can help advise me!