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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 46792
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I am on sick leave related to work related stress. Have been

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I am on sick leave related to work related stress. Have been with the company 15 years and have a new line manager since January 2015. I feel I am been victimised by my new and old line manager. I am the only female project manager working along side male project managers who are treated differently. I feel victimised by my line manager and his line manager. How do I take a grievience against them
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, my name is***** am a solicitor on this site and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How are the others treated differently?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My line manager's boss (my ex boss) spends time with his project managers attending their sites with them and giving them feed back. My line manager is supposed to spend time with me at my sites which doesn't happen very often. He will attend my sites with his line manager without me and always gives me negative feedback. I have done this particular job for 4 years without any support from any management and no training and did not have any problems. Since this new line manager has started with the company I have showed him the company's ways of working. Now he is my line manager he liasies with my previous line manager and picks on all my work without giving me any support. I believe both managers want to work me out.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Whilst stress in the workplace is becoming an ever-increasing problem, no specific legislation deals with it. The rights of employees in these circumstances are scattered across various legislation and common law examples.
A good starting point is to look at The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and related statutory instruments, which impose a general duty on employers to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work of all their employees. This includes a duty to undertake risk assessments and manage activities to reduce the incidence of stress at work. In addition, under common law an employer owes a duty of care towards its employees, the breach of which can amount to negligence.
As no standalone claim exists for being exposed to stress, the affected employee has the following options open to them if they were going to challenge their employer over this:
1. Grievance - this is a formal internal complaint, following which the employer is obliged to investigate the issues and deal with them in an appropriate manner. It should always be the first step in trying to bring the problem to the employer's attention and to try and reach a resolution. There is no specific way to make this – you have to follow the employer’s grievance procedure and it is simply a matter of outlining your complaints and why you are bringing in a grievance.
2. Constructive dismissal - this occurs where the employee resigns because they feel they were left with no other option in the circumstances. Further considerations include:
• It must be shown that the employer had acted in breach of the implied terms to provide a safe system of work or through their actions (or inactions) had broken the mutual trust and confidence
• The breach relied on must be sufficiently serious to justify instant resignation
• This claim is only available to those with at least 2 years' continuous service with their employer and must be made within 3 months of resigning.
3. Personal Injury - this is a claim for negligence against the employer. Further considerations include:
• Some recognised illness must have been suffered. This could include clinical depression, specific trauma stress, a physical injury (e.g. stroke), etc.
• The illness must have been caused directly by the employer's negligence, such as failing to appropriately deal with managing stress in the workplace
• The illness must have been reasonably foreseeable - for example if the employee experienced one breakdown, that would have indicated to the employer that there is a problem and that further issues could arise if things were not dealt with appropriately.
• The time limit to claim is 3 years from the time the injury was suffered.
In the first instance, I would advise going down the grievance route first and only consider pursuing legal action as a last resort if it is evident that the matter cannot be resolved in any other way.
I trust this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page). If for any reason you are unhappy with my response or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 46792
Experience: Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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