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Is this allowed? Is there anything I can do about it

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Hi everyone,

 

Looking for some expert advice please. Please beware that this will be long winded before I get to my question so apologies in advance.

 

THEN - Quick version - I was the only person out of a team of approx 20 to relocate over 100 miles with my job for a large government department in early 2010, without going into too much detail, I was bullied and harassed which caused me so much distress I had to leave. (It's more complicated than I've expressed here but I'm worried about who may be looking in) I can say that I ended up putting in a formal grievance about my line manager because they did not handle the situation of the B&H pro-actively. I had Union representation, but the support I was supposed to receive from HR was non- existent. (I.e she was never there when I wanted/needed to speak to her – on leave/sick)

 

The person in my dept who was to hear the formal grievance agreed (on advice from HIS rep at HR) to accept this as a grievance only if I dropped the B&H side, which on advice of my Union Rep, I did.

 

Outcome resulted in nothing upheld – by this point I had taken time off for stress and depression, tried moving departments and other stuff but felt I couldn't work anywhere in that area (as I still had to deal with/see my bullies on a regular basis)

 

So outcome – I took the early release that was on offer.

 

NOW (The problem) - I applied for a job with a company (through an agency) that does work for my old employer, (didn't know this when I applied) but they have no qualms about any conflict of interest unless I have a partner still working at old employment. (I don't)

However, after attending my interview the agency guy called and asked for references, but before he asked, he told me that the interviewer had called somebody she knows at my old workplace (not one of my referees) and this person has told them that I had been off sick a lot! I asked him if this person had also explained the reason why but as far as the agency guy knew, this person had not told the interviewer the reason just that there had been 'a lot of sick absence'. - All happened due to the stress of the B&H and then grievance

 

The agency then phoned HR (Assume he got the number from whoever the interviewer spoke to at my old workplace) and is now saying that a career break that I never mentioned from 4 years ago is causing problems with the new company – I never thought to add this onto my cv as I haven't written one for over 10 years and it simply didn't occur to me to do this.

 

As you can imagine the thought of some random person happily discussing my private details has shocked me, I don't know who this person was, but there is a strong possibility that it is somebody involved with my original complaint and/or subsequent grievance and reason for leaving.

 

I emailed the agency guy last week for any update, and he said that he has convinced employer that sickness will not be an issue, he has also said that they are only looking for one applicant to start at a later date (this has changed from several applicants, and was keen for me to start as soon as due to my experience)

 

That was over a week ago, and I've heard nothing since. I've concluded that I'm not going to get the job,and to be honest I don't really want it now after what's happened, but what I want to know is this – Is there anything I can do about a random person (who like I say could be one of the people involved in the reason I had left my job – at least an 80% chance) giving out my personal information and by all accounts only half of the story? The people involved in my grievance and subsequent leaving are very vindictive and nasty and I could see them doing this out of spite.

 

Even if it's not somebody directly involved, it seems that not only has my old employer ruined my 10 year career with bullying and harassment but can continue to do so when I'm looking for work elsewhere.

 

I am trying to get back to work, and have had severe confidence issues since the problems at my old workplace. It took a lot for me to build up to the interview and now the tiny bit of confidence I have managed to muster has been knocked out of me again.

 

I will be grateful for any advice, and thanks in advance for your thoughts

 

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Hello there. I'm really sorry to hear about your problems and hope we can help. Being bullied is horrible, I know.

 

We seem to be a bit thin on the ground so far today, but the guys often turn up later on and I'm sure they'll do their best for you.

 

My best, HB


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Main question is were they honest? Did you have a career break and sickness absence?

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Nice to see you, Becky, I didn't see you were hovering when I said we're thin on the ground.

 

HB x


Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Thanks honeybee,

 

Becky, I did have a career break and was back to work 4 years ago. There was sickness was due to the B&H.

 

Thanks

 

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If what was said was the truth in that you did have a break and you had had a lot of sickness absence then I dont think there is much you can do TBH apart from explain why you were off sick and say that it wont affect any future employment.You may have suspicions about who said what but without 100% proof I seriously dont think there is a lot you can do references may show that you were off sick a lot or that you had a break, rightly or wrongly if an employer knows someone at your previous job there is a very good chance that they will phone and ask about you.


If I have been of any help, please click on my star and let me know, thank you.

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Hi Assisted Blonde,

 

Thanks for looking in. I know that there's not much I can do if my referees divulge my sick absence and/or career break, but surely not just anyone in the office can discuss my personal information. If this person was involved in the B&H they could have told a pack of lies and obviously not in my favour.

 

I guessed there wasn't much I could do, it's just so frustrating that my whole life has already been ruined by my old employer and they can continue to get away with making my life hell. I give up :-(:-(:sad:.

 

Thanks anyway.

 

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