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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 49862
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I used to work local authority and in 2011 I had a long

Customer Question

I used to work for a local authority and in 2011 I had a long term illness which left me disabled. At that time the sickness absence procedure set down by the Council was not followed and as a result I had no contact with my employer, no support, no support back to work or referral to Occ Health until I made a complaint against them. I returned to work as a disabled employee on phased return, eventually going back full time.
In December 2015 I received an at risk of redundancy notice. I was told my post would be deleted and that I was not tobe ringfenced for nayhting at all. In discussion with my line manager I was told my skills were not required. Again, the Council's procedure for restructure and redundancy was not followed as there was no job evaluation and although my job description and actual role was identical to three others there was no pool. I was told it was not personal and that there was not a need for four managers, however it was only myself targeted. I eventually felt that I had no option but to apply for another job at a significantly lower wage. At that point the council decided to put the restructure 'on hold'. At no point was I told I was no longer at risk.
They have refused me any feedback on why I was once again not subject to the procedures and my manager has refused to give me answers. HR's view is that it was a management decision and nothing to do with them.
Now I have left the organisation they are refusing to allow me access to my emails to get the relevant information in case I need to take it further, and are refusing to respond to my requests for answers to specific questions. Can I do anything at all?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Are you still employed by them?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
No - my employment ended on 4 March
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
And what are you hoping to achieve exactly?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
For Ben - Because I had been told that after consultation I would be made redundant with no option of another role I applied for lower paid jobs, was successful and felt I had to take a £7K pay cut in order to keep an income. I was encouraged to take voluntary redundancy so that my role could be deleted to save money, which I did.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I requested information about why procedures had not been followed in both cases and why I had been treated unfairly in both cases. It seems as the only disabled manager I have been singled out - there is nothing else that makes me different from the others. In an ideal world I would like the difference between my annual salary and the salary I have been in my mind forced to take (i.e. £6313), but would just at least expect acknowledgement that the processes were not followed and that I was not treated according to process, apology in writing etc.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
If your employment has now ended your only option is to consider a claim in the employment tribunal for unfair dismissal and/or disability discrimination. Failure to follow a fair procedure in a dismissal, including redundancy, can make the whole dismissal procedurally unfair. So you could claim unfair dismissal for failure to follow a correct dismissal process. The compensation you would seek is ongoing losses of earnings until you have found or are likely to find a comparable job. At the same time, or as an alternative you can also claim for disability discrimination if you were treated detrimentally because of a disability, for example selected for redundancy or not offered suitable employment because of it. You have 3 months to submit the claims so you need to act relatively quickly but I would advise you appeal with the employer first. Also before you can claim you must go through ACAS and they will help you try and negotiate a settlement to avoid having to claim. This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the process leading up to tribunal, specifically the ACAS route, 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, leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question and if you need me to discuss the next steps in more detail In the meantime please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts from the top of the page. The question will not close and I can continue with my advice as discussed. Thank you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, do you need any further assistance or are you happy with the above response? Look forward to hearing from you.