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Bullied by boss desperately need help


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Hi all

 

I will try to keep this brief but basically my partner has been off work due to work related stress for 4 weeks. He is being bullied by his boss so much so that he got ready for work as normal one morning and then just broke down, crying and physically trembling and could not go out of the front door. I got him to the doctors the same day and he is now having to go for councilling because his stress and anxiety is so bad. He is in his 40's and this has all had a very bad effect on him. Most days he cannot even speak to anyone from work as the stress of it just sets him back and he breaks down so I have had to speak to them on his behalf but either my partner or myself have kept in constant contact with them with updates.

 

His boss is fully aware that my partner is ill because of his actions but he is insisting on a welfare visit next week. We said we didn't have a problem with the visit but requested that it be with my partners Service Manager and someone from HR.

 

He received an unpleasant letter from his bullying boss yesterday basically saying that he is aware my partner has refused to see him but he has got to have the meeting with him and the Service Manager. Instead of it being at our home his boss wants the meeting at a venue close by and will contact him with the details shortly. He has also made reference to the contact by my partner and wants an explanation why he is not contacting them. Even though he has been, either himself on his better days or when they have phoned I have spoken with them. There has been contact at least 3 times a week.

It was made clear that a meeting with the boss would be detrimental to his health but he is willing to meet with a different manager and Hr but his boss has totally disregarded the well-being of my partner and since the letter came yesterday he has been in a right state and he now has to worry about the meeting until it happens next week.

 

He is just not strong enough mentally to have a face to face meeting with this person.

 

My questions are, can I attend the meeting with him as my partner has admitted to me that he is scared of him and also is there anyway that we can insist his boss does not attend?

 

We are currently drafting a letter to raise a formal grievance against his boss.

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Hello and welcome to CAG. I'm sorry to hear what you're going through.

 

I understand how your OH feels as I went through something similar, although my welfare meeting wasn't with the person who bullied me. It was held away from home at my request, because I didn't feel comfortable inviting them there.

 

It sounds as if this man could be pushing HR around, I'd be interested to know what the forum regulars think. They should be along over the course of the day.

 

My best, HB

Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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Before you file a grievance, is there any chance you or your partner could speak to ho and ask to have the meeting with someone from there?

I can't see why they would refuse, but sadly some companies do.

In the long term, any chance of your partner moving to another department within the company so to avoid this bullying manager?

Unfortunately anxiety and depression are not studied enough and most times seen as a weakness.

In reality, they can affect anyone, even people without major problems in their life.

Most likely the manager doesn't realise the impact of his actions on your partner and possibly thinks that he just needs to pull himself together.

This usually doesn't help at all.

Anxiety and depression are illnesses and can affect anyone.

I would speak or write to ho (or better, a director) and see what they respond.

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Hi jess33

 

The first thing your husband needs to do is book an appointment with his Doctor, explain to the Doctor his symptoms and how he is feeling on a day to day basis. Ask the Doctor to write a letter detailing that he is just not up to any meetings whatsoever and the thought of any meeting is making him more anxious and stressed. Send it to HR, Recorded Delivery.

 

Get the Doctor to address the letter to HR Department. Definately raise the grievance, but leave it until he's better able to deal with it.

 

http://www.hse.gov.uk/stress/

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Thank you for your replies I will make him an appointment with the doctor to get a letter for HR as I really need to try and sort out this meeting, my OH is genuinely not in a fit state to see this man and the fact that he now needs councelling speaks volumes. He is usually a very strong person and I had no clue this was happening until he broke down on that morning and couldn't even walk out of the door.

 

I know that this man has had 3 possibly 4 complaints against him over the last 12 months all with allegations of bullying but nothing seems to change and there is also one other employee on sick at the moment with work related stress because of his bullying.

 

I desperately need help sorting this out, its breaking my heart seeing my partner like this.

 

Thank you

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Let us know what they say. If you need more advice.

 

Thank you for your replies I will make him an appointment with the doctor to get a letter for HR as I really need to try and sort out this meeting, my OH is genuinely not in a fit state to see this man and the fact that he now needs councelling speaks volumes. He is usually a very strong person and I had no clue this was happening until he broke down on that morning and couldn't even walk out of the door.

 

I know that this man has had 3 possibly 4 complaints against him over the last 12 months all with allegations of bullying but nothing seems to change and there is also one other employee on sick at the moment with work related stress because of his bullying.

 

I desperately need help sorting this out, its breaking my heart seeing my partner like this.

 

Thank you

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Hello again.

 

If you want someone to speak to, you could try the ACAS helpline. I know it sometimes helps to talk to a human being.

 

One caveat though, their advice can be patchy and it might be worth running it past the brains on this forum before you take any definitive action.

 

I really feel for you both that your OH has reached breaking point because of this man. My OH found it very hard when I was in bits and needed support from a couple of our friends to help him cope. I'm sure we can help you to find a way through this.

 

Hugs, HB

Illegitimi non carborundum

 

 

 

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I would ask for an occupational health assessment. The company may believe their own doctors more than yours.

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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I'm sure OH will get involved at some stage, but at this moment in time your own Doctor can get the ball rolling. I'm sure HR will pass the letter to OH and they will see if there is any benefit at all in referring you to their own doctor.

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I have finally managed to get through to the HR dept and have told them the situation, I had to be quite forceful to get my point across and told them that they have a duty of care to all employees and that by allowing this man to attend the meeting would be detrimental to my partners health, eventually they got back to me and said my partners boss would not be attending the meeting and they are arranging for someone else to attend instead, I have been told that because of the allegation of bullying my partner must now put in a formal grievance. He knows that he has to do this but his councilor advised him that he needs to wait until he is in a better state of mind to proceed with this as he is not strong enough to deal with it at present.

 

We are going to the doctors on Monday to get either a letter from him or a medical report so that we can give this to HR on Tuesday which is the day they want to visit.

 

I had to insist the meeting be held in our home because since my partner broke down he just will not go out of the house. I am still waiting for confirmation of this request.

 

I have no idea how my partner will cope with the meeting as he can't even bring himself to speak half the time. Luckily I am on 2 weeks holiday from work so I will be at home to support him. I have stayed really strong for him but I am starting to feel out of my depth now.

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Try to get your OH GP to defer the meeting for a month. Put in a brief grievance (as requested) citing bullying leading to personal injury. Mention this is a breach of the employment contract in terms of trust and confidence. You need to await their response.

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Thank you for your reply, please can you explain "bullying leading to personal injury" so that I fully understand. Both his boss (in writing) and the HR dept have said he has GOT to have the meeting, it seems they have no regard for my partners health and think they can overrule any advice from the doctor. I know the situation has to be dealt with to enable him to get back to work but they seem to be quite heavy handed in their approach. Not in any way sympathetic or understanding.

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Hi jess33

 

I'm not sure why you are speaking to his employers over the phone. If his employers are being unsympathetic, aggressive and not listening, it would be good to have that on paper. A covering letter stating that 'he will not be able to deal with any meetings for the foreseeable future and that he will contact them when he is well enough to deal with the meetings'.

 

You could go further and state, 'no amount of bullying (you can change bullying for another word) from the company will change the fact that he is unwell, the Doctor has confirmed that he is suffering from stress, anxiety and depression and cannot deal with meetings for the foreseeable future.

 

You could also add, 'you request all communication from the company in writing so there are no misunderstandings'.

 

Enclose the Doctor's letter, send it Recorded Delivery.

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You also need to balance this out. Refusal to meet may lead to dismissal in absentia. Better to keep a job if changes are made than to lose it and face et?

 

Militancy is fine if you have plenty cash. If not, other routes often yield better results.

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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He isn't saying he won't meet them. He is saying that he can't meet them at the moment because he isn't well enough to do so. There is actually something called 'sickness bullying', where employers 'bully' an employee whilst he/she are sick and not at work.

 

I don't think he is in a position to click his fingers and magically tell the stress, anxiety and depression to disappear.

 

I bet militancy requires a lot of energy.

 

You also need to balance this out. Refusal to meet may lead to dismissal in absentia. Better to keep a job if changes are made than to lose it and face et?

 

Militancy is fine if you have plenty cash. If not, other routes often yield better results.

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*shrugs* incite unhelpful action if you wish. I've been the one that does the sacking and I'd meet, and get an occupational health referal asap. And if I were in the union I'd have help from my rep.

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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It's for the OP to decide if it's unhelpful and if they want to follow the advice, as for 'incite unhelpful action if you wish', that did make me laugh. What relevance is the following to this thread? 'I've been the one that does the sacking'.

 

Yep the Union can be useful, but they can be hit and miss.

 

*shrugs* incite unhelpful action if you wish. I've been the one that does the sacking and I'd meet, and get an occupational health referal asap. And if I were in the union I'd have help from my rep.
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the relevance is, that if you want to stay with this employer, it's easier to fix things before you've been let go, than after, when you tend to turn invisible.

 

Handled badly, the employer can state the employee refused to deal with them - they have no legal obligation to deal with wife - and refused welfare meetings. With no information or cooperation, what option did they have but to let go?

 

That scenario could be avoided.

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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The wife is handling communications with the HR/company as the husband isn't in a position to do so, as he is ill, if she didn't there would be no communication at all. It isn't the ideal situation, it sounds like the employer isn't helping matters.

 

the relevance is, that if you want to stay with this employer, it's easier to fix things before you've been let go, than after, when you tend to turn invisible.

 

Handled badly, the employer can state the employee refused to deal with them - they have no legal obligation to deal with wife - and refused welfare meetings. With no information or cooperation, what option did they have but to let go?

 

That scenario could be avoided.

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My oh doctor told him that work can't make him meet them as doc has recommended he doesn't. Of course he's a doctor, no lawyer but seemed to work. Also hope u don't mind but I have messaged x

HSBC - 11/9/06 - prem letter sent

19/9/06 - lba sent £3391 requested

5/10/06 - MCOL

17/10/06 - offer for £1600 on one account recieved

28/11/06 - Full offer recieved

 

Capital one - 13/9/06 -letter asking for statements sent

17/10/06 - prelim sent for £640

 

Lloyds TSB - 13/9/06 -letter asking for statements sent

17/10/06 - prelim sent fro £732

Lloyds TSB - 26/9/06 - prem letter sent - £391

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Not really, emmzzi. If the OP's OH has had a nervous breakdown as a result of his boss's bullying (=behaviour calculated to cause distress and fear) and they have been notified of this by a report from a medical practitioner informing them of this, then it may become illegal for them to victimise the OH further. If he is sacked as a result, he may have a legal claim.

 

The employer will be obliged to take the grievance seriously or risk breaking the ERA.

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My stance is that it's pretty much always better to do what you can to fix it before you get to claim. I have yet to see a thread here suggesting their e.t. was not stressful. Am overly militant stance seldom helps.

Never assume anyone on the internet is who they say they are. Only rely on advice from insured professionals you have paid for!

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  • 1 month later...

Hi all

Its been a terrible few weeks, my OH had his welfare meeting at home and it was decided that due to his obvious anxiety he should see an independent doctor to establish if he was well enough to go through the grievance procedure. The doctor diagnosed that his condition was moderately severe and that it was totally work related. He even used the word bullying in his report. It was decided that although it would be difficult for him he should get the grievance out of the way, with special condition attached, ie: must be accompanied, must take breaks during the meeting and if it was going to last more than one and a half hours it must be done in stages over a few days. The doctor advised that in order for his counceling to be effective this would be one less stress to have to deal with if he got it out of the way.

At the welfare meeting my OH was told he was not to contact any of his colleagues and they were also warned to have any contact with him! I do not understand this because my partner has not done anything wrong and his colleagues are his friends, they were just genuinely concerned about him.

So, today he had his grievance hearing and basically HR think he is imagining it all. Even though my OH's companion backed up everything he said. HR are denying that any previous complaints were made against the manager, even though we have a copy of one of the complaints that was made. Each time my partner answered their questions they would reply, that's not bullying. So my OH's companion kept having to tell them that they need to investigate it properly.

They said they will but all through the meeting they kept trying to imply that the events in question did not happen and that the manager has done nothing wrong. One of the ladies present was at our home a few weeks ago and made a comment about the manager in question but in todays meeting she denied saying it. It seems that they have all closed ranks.

My OH is not imagining this, he is ill because of his treatment by this man, even an independent doctor has said so. For him to be this ill he must have a very good imagination.

When the meeting was over my OH's companion told him that the manager in question is being moved and he will be starting his new position in January. I find it all very strange. My OH just wanted them to acknowledge what this man has done so that he stops doing it but it looks like they are just moving him on so that he can do it somewhere else. So if they have already decided to move him why are they not willing to admit what he has done.

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