Monday, 8 February 2010

Tales from the Tribunal Part 6 - That Statement of Reasons in Full

Yes, its finally arrived. I have the full Statement of Reasons for my Tribunal decision (note, big file).

I'll add a few highlights here as, being 50 pages long, you may not wish to read through the whole lot. If you do, it might help to let you know that the first 8 pages is mostly legal stuff which is all very interesting for some but others may wish to scroll on by.

"The Claimant's [me] evidence is that Ms [Lisa] Black had given him the impression that it was all his fault and said that she had considered moving him out of his post. The claimant referred to disfunctionality (sic) in the team; to lack of support and added that:

"If various grievances had run to timetable he would have been able to make more progress."

It is the Claimant's evidence that Ms Black responded by saying words to the effect:

"Well, why haven't you then?"

Ms Black confirmed the meeting took place, confirmed the purpose of it and also confirmed that she had raised the possibility of moving the claimant, but denied that she had used the words referred to and had sneered at him. The Tribunal having considered the evidence preferred that of the claimant because he had a clearer recollection of events and generally the Tribunal found the claimant to be a truthful witness, not given to exaggeration..."

That's from pp16-17. Note how the Tribunal makes the point that they found me a truthful witness, at no stage in the decision did they say the same about Lisa Black.

"A further ground of complaint is that the Claimant contends that the Respondent failed to give him the support he needed in his role as Welfare Rights Team leader. The Tribunal notes that, of the three complainants, all of them sought to invoke the Harassment and Discrimination procedure after they had become aware of matters the Claimant as their Team leader had either raised with them or was seeking to raise with them and which might have resulted in disciplinary action being pursued. This was his job, it was his responsibility as Line Manager to raise such matters with them."

That's from p42. I took that as the Tribunal's recognition that the three complainant's may not have been of entirely honest intent when making complaints about me.

"When dealing with the case of Ms Roy, Ms Black called for further investigation to be carried out to address an allegation by Ms Roy of sex discrimination by the claimant. When Ms Black received the additional information she concluded the sex discrimination complaint was without foundation. However, on reviewing the additional information available to her it should have been clear...that it addressed wider issues of the Claimant's management and called into question the motivation of the complainant Ms Roy. The Tribunal finds it difficult to believe and accept that Ms Black did not recognise the significance of the information before her and, in particular, the relevance of it to the claimant...

...Ms Black had met with the claimant on two occasions but on neither occasion was she prompted to provide him with a copy of the report notwithstanding it being clear from the evidence that a copy of the addendum report must have been made available to Ms Roy prior to the step 2 meeting...which contradicts evidence before the Tribunal that there was concern about disclosure of the report because one of the witnesses who contributed to the report feared reprisals [from Ms Roy]...the Tribunal is not clear on the evidence before it upon what basis Ms Black decided it could be disclosed to Ms Roy (but not to the claimant).

From pp42-43. During the internal procedures Lisa Black tried to claim that it 'didn't occur to her' to give me a copy of this extra information. Bollocks.

"There was also a matter of complaint by the Claimant in relation to a breach of confidentiality by Emma Hodgett. At the time it was assumed she had said things to Gary Ward, a Trade Union representative, and which was in breach of confidentiality...Ms Hodgett before the Tribunal denied [on oath] that she had breached her professional standing and that she had said anything to Mr Ward. At the time, the Investigating Officer spoke to her on the telephone and he did not think it appropriate to obtain a written statement from her. Possibly had he done so, in the light of the evidence before this might have been established that the evidence of Mr Ward was in some way flawed."

During internal procedures Gary Ward said in a statement that Emma Hodgett slagged me off. However, Emma denied on oath that she had said anything about me. Gary Ward didn't appear at the Tribunal despite NCC relying quite heavily on his statements made during internal proceedings. Basically, he made it up.

I'll be writing a separate article about Unison's actions during my sorry time at NCC. For now let's just say I think that some of their actions went beyond honest advocacy for their members.

Well, that's just a few small extracts from the decision. I would have added more but it would have meant retyping reams of material so I just picked out a few bits that hopefully stand on their own.

No comments: