35 years since 1979 at the moment there is a lot of restructuring
Hi, sorry I was offline when you replied today. This appears to be a case of bullying, which is unfortunately something that happens all too often in the workplace. The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) defines bullying as “offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour, an abuse or misuse of power through means that undermine, humiliate, denigrate or injure the recipient.” Whatever form it takes, it is unwarranted and unwelcome to the individual subjected to it.
Under law, specifically the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, an employer has a duty to ensure the health, safety and welfare of its employees. In addition, they have the implied contractual duty to provide a safe and suitable working environment. That includes preventing, or at least effectively dealing with bullying behaviour occurring in the workplace.
In terms of what the victim of bullying can do to try and deal with such problems, the following steps are recommended:
In general, a victim should try and gather as much evidence as possible before considering making a formal complaint and certainly before going down the resignation route. As bullying often takes verbal form, the best way is to keep a detailed diary of all bullying occasions so that there is at least some reference in written form that the employer and/or the tribunal can refer to.
Hope this clarifies your position? If you could please let me know that would be great, thank you
Ben thankyou for your answer. It has been helpful. However, could I also ask you to comment on my hearing problems too? I have been hard of hearing for approx 20 years. My hearing loss happened gradually after the births of my two children - I have been told it is an inherited condition which happens in pregnancy. Before the restructuring in my workplace I was in a small office with max of two other people - this was arranged by HR to accommodate my hearing problems which I experienced in a larger office with more people. Since restructuring I have been placed again in a large office and find it extremely difficult even with my hearing aid to hear what is happening. Can you advise me please?
Is your hearing issue linked to the bullying?
I am not sure - I dont think so but at other times she uses my hearing problems against me. for example if a phone call come in on her extension for me she would tell me but I would not hear her so when I do finally realise that she is calling me she is laughing at me and trying to include other colleagues in her laughter by looking around to see who is joining her in the 'joke'. Also when I have to speak to her she calls out loudly 'speak up I cannot HEAR YOU'. So yes maybe it is linked to the bullying although she did start the bullying before she knew I had a hearing problem. thankyou for your first answer.
I wonder can you reply to my query about hearing problems please? You asked if the hearing issue is linked to the bullying and I would say it is on occasions. I have a meeting tomorrow morning with my line manager and HR so would appreciate your view on this. Thank you. Karen