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Michael Holly
Michael Holly, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 6967
Experience:  I have 20 years of experience as a solicitor in litigation and other areas
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I run a Contract & Commercial Cleaning Company & we took on

Resolved Question:

Hi, I run a Contract & Commercial Cleaning Company & we took on a Contract for a Builders & Sparkle Clean on the Isle of Wight. I decided to send 3 of my employees over there to stay & act as Supervisors, and take on several people from the local area on Temporary Contracts. I interviewed a young man who seemed to fit the bill and offered him a position as a cleaner for the 5 to 6 weeks of the Contract.We completed starter forms, etc.and he started on Tuesday 5th September, 2017. He started off fine, a little slow but we figured it was the kind of cleaning he hadn't done before so he would get quicker as the week went on. We were working for a Company as Sub-Contractors and they take Health & Safety very seriously, just as we do.By the end of the week this young man was discussing his sex life with all and sundry, he was refusing to wear his PPE, safety gear. He wouldn't do as he was asked and was getting more & more obstructive and nasty with it, he was untidy, unruly and impossible to work with. He said he had to drink a lot for medical reasons, which he hadn't declared, but this was fine, we allowed him to take drinks on site so long as he kept them in the cleaning cupboard and went to that area when he wanted to take a drink, he wouldn'tdo this & was leaving drinks all over rooms that had just been cleaned. He was completely out of control & getting to the other member's of the crew.The Company we work for would give black marks out for non-compliance of their H & S rules. Too many "sins" and you could lose the Contract, and this was the biggest contract we had ever had.I was worried that he would'nt wear his safety gear on what was a very busy Construction site, he was becoming a risk to himself & others and his behaviour was going to lose us the contract.I made the decision to let him go & wrote a dismissal letter which was delivered to him by hand as I was still on the Mainland running the business.He took it very badly, claiming that he was getting sacked because he was Autistic, something none of us knew as he hadn't told me at the Interview or Induction, though he swears he did.If he had told me I would not have taken him on as a Construction site is not a safe environment for someone disabled.I have not had anything to do with Autism, I am ignorant as to the varying degrees of disability caused by this condition. The young man in question came across at Interview as personable & capable of a cleaning position, albeit a little slow. He told me he could drive & would be using his earnings towards the cost of Car Insurance as at his age it was expensive. This seemed perfectly reasonable to me. In fact at Interview everything about him seened perfectly reasonable.It was a different matter on site after a couple of days. As I wasn't on site I didn't spot the problems arising.He made a terrific scene before leaving the site, he made threats to everyone and he has threatened me by text, demanding that I give him his job back. I rec'd a letter from him
today with more threats, and he has been threatening a young woman and her children on Facebook. A young woman who also started with us.What do I do next? My Accountant has his paperwork & is working out his pay, tax & NIC so I can pay him on Monday, but I have never had this kind of thing happen before.I hope you can offer some sort of guidance.Jean Vernall
Sparkle Cleaning*
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Michael Holly replied 2 months ago.

Dear Jean

You are perfectly entitled to terminate this young man's employment. Where a person has a disability and you are made aware of it by the employee your duty is to try to make reasonable adjustments to assist them in doing their job.

You were not aware of his condition at the start but , once aware, you did make such adjustments such as allowing him to have drinks on site.

However, you do not have to put up with behaviour which endangers the contract and possibly the safety of others on site.

You also have a duty to others on site and are not expected to risk your livelihood and that of the others who depend on you for employment.

Pay him off and advise him that if he makes any more threats to anyone you will report all the threats he has made to the police.

If there are any further points please reply I will be happy to respond.

Kindly either accept or rate my answer on the system so I get credit for my time.

Best wishes

Michael

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