Hello what was the nature of the meeting, was it just to confirm her suspension? Also how long has she worked there for?
Hi there, being placed on suspension is not an automatic assumption of guilt and does not amount to disciplinary action. It is there to be used as a precautionary measure whilst an employer investigates any allegations against the employee. Reasons for suspending could be in the case of gross misconduct, breakdown of relationship, risk to an employer's property, their clients or other employees, to preserve evidence or ensure it is not tampered with, avoid potential witnesses being pressured or intimidated, etc.
During the period of suspension the employer should conduct a reasonable investigation into the allegations against the employee. If the investigation gathers enough evidence to justify the taking disciplinary action that could be the next step. In that case the employee has the right to be informed in advance of the allegations against them and be given the opportunity to prepare for the hearing.
On the other hand, if the investigation does not find enough evidence to justify a disciplinary, the employer should terminate the suspension immediately and allow the employee to return to work as normal.
In the circumstances it is best to wait to see where the employer takes this. If they proceed to investigate then she should cooperate as much as she can and make it clear that she was just in the wrong place at the wrong time and that it was the other person who was responsible. If she has any witnesses then it would be good to approach these.
If this proceeds to a formal disciplinary then the employer has to follow a fair procedure and any decision they take should be fair and reasonable. There are specific requirements to ensure this happens and they are all covered under the Code of Conduct on disciplinary proceedings although they would only apply to employees protected against unfair dismissal.
This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the procedure expected of the employer if they were to take this further, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you
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