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Posts posted by Dam1on

  1. I had a similar issue with getting docs included in the bundle. I either got silence or a denial that documents exist. On the third time of asking I copied the tribunal court in on the string of email correspondance between me and the respondant's solicitor and this seemed to focus their attention. Not all docs were forthcoming but most were and I got a written record from the respondant stating that other documents didn't exist.

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  2. Hi Lorraine

    This is what I intend to put in the ET1

    I would like yourself and anyone else for that matter to cast a crittical eye over it. I know it's a bit long winded but this is not a simple matter. Trust me it's only a quarter of it's original length.

    Thanks Damion


    I believe I have been unfairly and wrongfully dismissed for the following reasons.


    According to the ACAS code of practice and the Company’s own procedure issues should be dealt with promptly and properly investigated.

    Despite the incident, that occurred on September 30th, being immediately apparent the investigation was not carried out until twenty four days had passed. Although not procedure, it has become common practice in the event of significant issues that the Shift leader, Shift Chemist or even Operator is contacted the next day by phone or even called into work to explain events; this did not happen in my case. There was a brief informal discussion held between me and my manager on the 5th October which was my first scheduled shift back since the incident and another on the 15th October. It did not appear to me at this point the event was being seen with as of great significance. My first disciplinary hearing was November 13th which was adjourned and reconvened on November 27th. As the relevant instructions were oral and witnessed it was important that these testimonies were gathered from all available witnesses and gathered promptly, neither happened.


    The ACAS code of practice states that notifications for disciplinary hearings should contain sufficient information about the alleged misconduct or poor performance and its possible consequences.


    Whilst the description of the event was clear and accurate it was not clear whether I was being disciplined for poor performance, misconduct or gross misconduct and I was not made aware of any possible consequences; as a result I could not prepare a full defence.


    The ACAS code of practice and the Company’s procedure states that copies of written evidence and witness statements are provided prior to a hearing.


    Towards the end of the disciplinary hearing on November 13th I was questioned about notes claiming to be taken at the time of informal discussions between my manager and me on 5th and 15th of November. I was not made aware of their existence and had no copies of these note and therefore could not prepare a full defence.


    Company procedures dictate that in the event of health and safety or quality failings that specific reports be raised and investigated.

    As part of our regulatory responsibility we have to record any variance from procedure in the form of a “Deviation”. Deviations range from incorrect number entries onto documents (e.g. 12345 instead of 12354) to charging the wrong material and ruining a batch. A massive range of significance yet no Deviation was raised for my error.

    The company encourages the reporting of Accidents, Incidents and Near Misses in the form of AIR reports. AIRs range from “half cup of tea left in the canteen” to “three hundred litres of Methanol discharged to drain”, both real, yet no AIR was raised for my incident.


    Neither of these reports was raised at the time of the incident, they did not exist at the investigation and were not present during my hearings. To the best of my knowledge these were not raised and this highlights a significant change in the Company’s attitude to this event from the time of event to the statements made in my dismissal letter and the findings of my appeal. In both incidences the event was highlighted as being a significant health & safety and compliance issue.

    After my appeal the Company agreed that there was no evidence to intentionally falsify company records therefore I can see no grounds for a charge of gross misconduct.


    The company’s argument in this case can be condensed to; through my neglect, in failing to ensure instructions were followed, I caused company documents to be falsified and that along with the “significant [sic] health & safety breaches” is gross misconduct.


    At the time of the event the Company had not seen these as significant enough to report them in the manner set out in their own procedures.


    If there is no gross misconduct I should not have been summarily dismissal and have therefore been wrongfully dismissed as the company has breached my contract.


    I believe the Company had either been deliberately opaque in order to hinder my defence or at some point the disciplinary process has snowballed beyond a point where it can be stopped and those involved could maintain face.


    There is strong evidence to suggest that the company was aware of its intent to allege I had intentionally instructed an operator falsify Company documentation. The only possible alternative is that they genuinely stumbled on this during the disciplinary hearing and at that point suspended the hearing, and I, when it was reconvened the letter I received now contained the allegation of falsification, stated this was gross misconduct and as such was grounds for summary dismissal, this was a change from my previous disciplinary. Although I defended that allegation at that hearing I was summarily dismissed on 30th November. I later appealed that decision and although the Company admitted that there was no evidence of intent nobody felt they could regress to the level at which the original hearing was being held.


    Finally the company falsely claimed to have supporting evidence that supported their claims.


    The Company claimed to have supporting testimony from one particular operator. They didn’t and withdrew this claim on appeal.


    The company claimed to have notes taken, at the time, of a conversation where it is alleged that I confessed to this falsification. On appeal I challenged those note as they had not been written in my presence and were a very one sided account of that conversation. The Company also withdrew these notes on appeal.


    The incident involving myself was a genuine good faith error. The original thought process behind the decisions made is seen as sound by all parties. The error I made was to fail to correctly communicate this to the next shift and due to a misunderstanding an operator signed off to say he had completed something he had not. To the unaccustomed these would appear serious and significant yet on closer examination there was no, and could have been no significant consequence either safety or quality. This was my first significant error in six years as a shift leader with a perfect disciplinary record and a better than average appraisal history. In total I had been with the Company for 11 years.

  3. Hi Dam1on,


    you should get hold of any of your company's disciplinary policy documents to maybe highlight where they have not stuck to procedures.


    At this stage you should be looking to submit your claim (form ET1). You will have time to hone your case and prepare your witness statement ahead of the full hearing. You don't have to be wholly prepared ahead of getting an ET1 in.


    Do you want me to give you a brief note on what is required for the ET1?


    That's fantastic Lorraine.


    I was worried that once submitted things could not be changed so was trying to put as much in as possible. A note pointing out what's required would be very helpful.





  4. Hi Damion. What grounds are you intending to appeal on? The dismissal was procedurally unfair for a start as they have to make you aware at the beginning of the process if it is deemed gross misconduct and could result in your dismissal. This should have been the basis of your appeal but I understand that the chance of appeal has gone now. What other grounds are you claiming on?


    Primarily on that context. They made no mention of GM or dismissal at my first hearing. It was only when the meeting notes of the 5/11 were sprung on me that they suspended that hearing. I was then sent another letter to reconvene which did state GM and possible dismissal.


    The whole thing from beginning to end has been handled very poorly. It is my belief that niether my manager or the departmental manager thought particularly much of this event until it came up in a management meeting two weeks later, then they were seen not to be doing anything.


    The buisness is a mess with a host of mistakes being made in all departments and of much more significance than this one. Unfortunately for my this is probably the first to be directly linked to somebody in a supervisory role.


    I'm really looking for some advice on what constitutes neglect and how I can defend this aspect and how this term 'by inference or omission' works.





  5. Hi Lorraine,


    Yes I do intend to claim for unfair dismissal, I'm not sure on what grounds. At all points the Company has been a bit wooly about what I was being disciplined for. It is starting to look like they put this "intentional Falsification" charge up as a strawman to stop me contesting the many mitigating factors surrounding the original errors and to be honest I don't really know how to move forward.


    I would like some help condensing my story into something concise and also help with identifying suitable grounds to appeal.





  6. Hi All,


    I was dismissed on grounds of gross misconduct on 30th November 2012. There were two reasons for this dismissal outlined in my dismissal letter:-


    1, That i instructed, either directly or by "inference or omission", someone who reports to me to to falsify company documentation.

    2, That I failed to correctly hand over information relevant to the issue above and in doing so failed to follow the company Quality and Health & Safety Procedures.


    The incident was investigated independently (internal, different department) where the two issues were highlighted and disciplinary action recommended. There were a number of mitigating factors highlighted and as such the requirement for disciplinary action was to be based on a balance of probabilities, i.e. was this intentional fraud and an attempt to cover it up.


    There are a number of issues surrounding the investigation and disciplinary process that did not follow the company procedures: -


    1, The Company Disciplinary Procedure states that any disciplinary action will be proceeded by a full and prompt investigation. The incident occurred on the night shift of 30th of September yet, although it was immediately apparent, was not investigated until 24th October. When the investigation took place it failed to interview all the people that could have clarified the first point.


    2, The charge of breaching Quality and H&S procedure could be levelled at nearly any mistake but if this was sufficiently serious there are reporting procedures for reporting both Quality and H&S failures. No such reports were raised as, at the time, nobody saw this as that significant.


    At my first disciplinary hearing on 13th Nov it was not made clear to me exactly at what level I was being disciplined i.e. there was not a statement saying "you did X and Y and this constitutes gross misconduct". This is important as this hearing went on for over three hours and was more of a fishing/muck spreading exercise. In the last 15 minutes I was shown a set of notes claiming to be notes of two conversations me and my manager had on the 5th & 15th of October (also failure of procedure not to disclose before hand). These notes contradicted my recollection of events and, on the surface, appeared to cast doubt on my truthfulness. This hearing was suspended, as was I, until the meeting was reconvened on 27th November.


    The second hearing was relatively brief and added little to the matter. I was informed in writing that I was to be summarily dismissed on the grounds of gross misconduct effective immediately,


    I appealed this decision on the 21st of December and I was informed in writing on the 7th of Jan 2013 that the appeal was not upheld.


    In their response the company agreed that there was no evidence that I had intentionally instructed the falsification of documentation. They withdrew the notes of 5th and 15 of October as I had shown them to be either poor reflections or in fact fictions. They withdrew claims that testimony supported their case when it did no such thing. Instead they have liberally sprinkled the word Neglect around and are stating now that the reasons for my dismissal are unchanged.


    They are basically saying that through neglect I caused the falsification of company documents by inference or omission.


    There are many mitigating factors surrounding the initial mistakes which I have not had an opportunity to defend. On paper this incident looks serious to those not experienced in my field but in reality there were no consequences and could have been no consequences because of these errors. There is a general level of shock and outrage amongst my former colleagues that this has happened.


    I could go on all day, but thanks for reading and ANY advice is greatly appreciated.




    Edit, sorry I have the full account in a word document which is currently at ten pages and getting longer, I'm trying to condense this down a little for the ET1 and clarify reasons that will appeal to a tribunal.

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