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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 47388
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A colleague of mine was pulled into the office by two senior

Customer Question

a colleague of mine was pulled into the office by two senior managers at work and told that somebody had raised to them that she had been taking 'illicit drugs' outside of work and that it also involved myself and told my colleague that they would be talking to me about it further nobody has approached me about this despite openly telling my collage last friday that they would. this has had a massive effect on me as i have been worried about going to work/what accusations have been said about my personal life and who exactly has discussed this with my managers.
today while at work i asked to speak to a more snr manager than the ones who had arranged the meeting with my colleage and told her how i felt that nobody had come and spoke to me after making such accusations, she had apologised on their behalf and informed me that it wasn't an issue and it hadn't interfered with my working life (?) i asked her who had spoke to my managers about this and she said that she wasn't sure and she thought that it was a member of the public and that as far as she was aware it wasn't a member of staff at work... which i know is false as i have never taken 'illicit drugs' in public! she had told me that she would look into it and get back to me, which she hasn't.
i am wondering where i stand with this situation as i feel totally violated and lost my dignity that such things are being said about my personal life at work and how the situation is being managed.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 9 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Hi Ben
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 9 months ago.

Hi there. Based on what you have described, what are you ideally hoping to achieve?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
whether or not this is harassment, i feel as though it is unfair and that other colleagues judgement of me is affected by this
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 9 months ago.

OK thank you. Please can you also tell me how long you have worked there for?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
3 years this march in this dept
7 years in the organisation
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 9 months ago.

OK, thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Also, please do not responded to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 9 months ago.

This is not harassment but it can be general unfair treatment, or if it is done deliberately – bullying.

As far as the official outcome is concerned, unless you are actually taken through a formal disciplinary hearing and found guilty there would be no formal assumption that you have done anything wrong and you should officially be viewed as innocent. Sadly that does not stop people talking about others behind their backs and gossip will always exist in a work environment.

In terms of dealing with this there are really only two possible options. One is to raise a formal grievance to officially complain about this and the people who have spread the rumours. The other is to resign and claim constructive dismissal. This occurs when the following two elements are present:

· Serious breach of contract by the employer; and

· An acceptance of that breach by the employee, who in turn treats the contract of employment as at an end. The employee must act in response to the breach and must not delay any action too long.

A common breach by the employer occurs when it, or its employees, have broken the implied contractual term of trust and confidence. The conduct relied on could be a single act, or a series of less serious acts over a period of time, which together could be treated as serious enough (usually culminating in the 'last straw' scenario).

Of course this is a drastic step so should only be pursued if there is no other way out and you strongly believe you cannot continue working there.

Please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars. I can continue answering follow up questions and in particular can also discuss what other options you have in terms of negotiating a way out if you have to leave. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can still continue this discussion. Thank you

Ben Jones and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
thankyou for your response.
i do not want to leave this job however i do feel that it has had a big impact on me. in terms of bullying, if my managers are denying that it came from a member at work i am unable to consider this as bullying. if i raise as grievance would this be investigated properly and take action if it is somebody at work?
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
am i in a position to find out who told my manager this information as it is untrue and i find it malicious behavior i.e if they tell me the report was anonymous
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 9 months ago.

The employer has a duty to properly investigate grievances but no one can force the outcome they would like so it is still in their hands. You can appeal the outcome if needed. The employer may not necessarily be able to reveal the identity of the person but they can allow you to raise a grievance against them and investigate and deal with it, knowing who it is, but without revealing this to you.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
essentially there is nothing i can do. i do feel this is really unfair as this alters peoples professional judgement of me and i just feel so demoralised
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 9 months ago.

well you do have the right to rise the grievance - as mentioned even if you do not know the identities of those you are complaint about the employer still has a duty to investigate and deal with the complaint and they could discipline them behind closed doors so to speak

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
thank you for your advice.
i will certainly raise a grievance
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 9 months ago.

you are welcome and best of luck