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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49814
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I only have 18 months service, I was promoted on an interim

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I only have 18 months service, I was promoted on an interim basis from Feb to June 2015, the business did not back fill my role as they had agreed so in April (after 8 to 10 weeks of excessive hours / pressure) I was signed off with work related stress after suffering a work related stress (reaction).
Prior to going off sick I complained (informally) that I was being targeted by a new director (my equal) I believe this was direct sex discrimination, female that only likes to work with males, I was belittled, avoided (side-tracked), managers have been manipulated by this person and I have watched her lie in meetings and take credit for others work.
I went back to work early in June, I have had a good month and had decided not to take action and then yesterday I was placed on garden leave and my permanent role is being made redundant. I'm thinking - do I sit quietly or raise a grievance now? I have a feeling this person is behind my current situation - and the redundancy process is pre-empted if I am being asked to sit at home for a month. ... any suggestions??
Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Have you been given details of the redundancy and why your job is no longer required?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Yes, the business has gone through a significant amount of change and my function supported a business that has now been split into 2, however we have just bought another large business and my function will be under review with the larger business in mind. I actually have no issue with being under consultation for redundancy but I think the business is aware I have been mistreated and they have put me on garden leave to avoid dealing with my issue.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I think for me its a question of them breaching health and safety (They knew I had an issue with this person at work) I am pretty sure what has happened is pretty much sex based harassment - this is a male dominated environment and this has been a female employee essentially discrediting me to push me out... for me this has been a classic bully tale and there is no reason for me to be 'out of the business' at all - its a smoke screen (does that make sense?) sorry - I work as Head of ER for a large business and I am concerned that the business leads have been heavily manipulated - I'm a good performer and I want to fight to stay - I didn't want to go down a negative legal route but feel I am being completely shafted (for want of a better word)
Thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and will get back to you as soon as possible. Please do not respond to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you
Many thanks for your patience. The starting point is that if you have been continuously employed at your place of work for less than 2 years then your employment rights will unfortunately be somewhat limited. Most importantly, you will not be protected against unfair dismissal. This means that your employer can dismiss you for more or less any reason, and without following a fair procedure, as long as their decision is not based on discriminatory grounds (i.e. because of gender, race, religion, age, a disability, sexual orientation, etc.) or because you were trying to assert any of your statutory rights (e.g. requesting maternity/paternity leave, etc.).
So the key here really is whether all of this has come about as a result of sex discrimination, as you allege. This may not always be easy to prove – you do state that there is a culture in the company for this to happen but you would need to provide some evidence that the reasons here were gender-related. Would you have been treated differently if you were male? Would you be able to provide some evidence to back that up? If this is just a case of bullying because of you as a person, not because you were female, then your rights would still be as above because bullying is not something you get protection against until you have 2 years’ service.
In many respects you have nothing to lose by raising a grievance now. You are better off doing so whilst still employed by them because if your employment does get terminated then you can no longer raise a grievance (or at least they do not have to hear it). So to be able to fight this whilst you still have rights as an employee you should consider raising it now. The employer should investigate these complaints and try to resolve them. If you are unsatisfied with the outcome then you can also appeal.
Should this result in redundancy and your employment is terminated, then you have the option of considering pursuing it as an automatically unfair dismissal (if it was linked to your gender) or just make a sex discrimination claim. Before you could submit either of these you would be expected to go through ACAS and use them as a conciliator where you and the employer try to agree on some sort of compensation instead of going to tribunal. This is all free so you have nothing to lose by doing it and could end up with something to compensate you for this without the need to drag this through a tribunal.
An alternative way out is to approach the employer on a 'without prejudice' basis (i.e. off the record) to try and discuss the possibility of leaving under a settlement agreement. Under a settlement agreement, the employee gets compensated for leaving the company and in return promises not to make any claims against the employer in the future. It is essentially a clean break, although the employer does not have to agree to it so it will be subject to negotiation. In any event, there is nothing to lose by raising this possibility with them because you cannot be treated detrimentally for suggesting it and it would not be used against you.
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
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