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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50151
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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Sickness and absence levels - I was employed by a school

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Sickness and absence levels - I was employed by a school to do 2.5 cleaning a week. Got Tupe over two years ago to a cleaning company, they came into the school before the tupe took place and interviewed us all individually and I told them this was a second job but I do sometimes have to have time off to do training as I work as care support worker.Iwas told on this meeting that it wouldn't be a problem. I have had a few days off sick as suffer from migraines and just recently my car broke down and was in garage for 2 days. I informed them of the problem and they now have sent me a letter for discilinary action and at the end of letter it says [ I must inform you that a potential outcome of this meeting could be up to and including dismissal ] How do I stand ?
Hello, my name is***** am a solicitor on this site and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What exactly are you being accused of?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
My letter says sickness and absence levels have reached unacceptable levels and needed to improve immediately.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
According to there discipilinary procudures, I have always be honest about the reason for my absence if it was traing or sickness.
So looking at the amount of times you have been sick have you reached the limit specified in a disciplinary policy?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I have probably had quite a bit of time off because the care company I worked for tuped us over in March this year and I had to do all the training again as they like to do all the training for there company so I have had a lot of days training, but was always up front with them.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Sickness I had 10 days.
Ok but were you taking these days off as sick leave?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
If you could email your response as I have to go to work now I can't be late. Thank you in advance for your reply to this matter.
Ok I will respond on here you can access it at any time
Hi, the issue here really is whether you have taken too much time off, either as sick or other leave (apart from holidays) and you are now flagged up against their absence policy. You may have had to take time off genuinely for sickness and for training but that is still time off from work and can be treated as part of your overall absence from work. What I would say however is that if you were specifically granted time off to attend training and there was never any indication that it would be treated as absence from work, you could argue that it was authorised leave.
At this stage you should not worry too much about dismissal because it is unlikely to be considered fair or reasonable for an employer to dismiss you straight away for absence from work, especially if it relates to sick leave or pre-approved time off. If they go ahead and dismiss you then your dismissal is likely to be unfair. What the employer should do instead is meet with you then discuss your levels of absence and perhaps issue a warning that it must improve and only if after a review period it has failed to improve consider dismissal. You need to be given the opportunity to fix this first before they go down the dismissal route.
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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