Carer loses unfair dismissal claim
A CARER accused of threatening a brain-injured person with a pair of scissors has lost an unfair sacking claim.An employment tribunal has also thrown out a claim by Andrea Moran, from Newmarket, that she had suffered detrimental treatment after complaining about a manager who was subsequently dismissed.
A CARER accused of threatening a brain-injured person with a pair of scissors has lost an unfair sacking claim.
An employment tribunal has also thrown out a claim by Andrea Moran, from Newmarket, that she had suffered detrimental treatment after complaining about a manager who was subsequently dismissed.
Last month the tribunal heard evidence from both Ms Moran and her former employer, the charity Headway Cambridge, which strongly denied her allegations.
Ms Moran, of Centre Drive, Newmarket, said her problems had begun when she lodged a complaint about sexual harassment and bullying by her manager.
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Trustees at the charity had failed to protect her from the consequences, said Ms Moran who started working for Headway Cambridge in May 2000.
Allegations by fellow workers led to her being called to a disciplinary hearing where she was issued with a six-month written warning after admitting using inappropriate language.
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Ms Moran was then suspended by the charity following a complaint about her behaviour made to Cambridgeshire Social Services, which ordered an investigation by the parent organisation Headway UK.
Chief Executive Peter McCabe told the tribunal that every time he and two colleagues seemed to be ready to conclude their investigation further allegations about Ms Moran had emerged.
That led to a disciplinary hearing in June last year at which it was ruled she had committed gross misconduct and was dismissed. An appeal against that decision was unsuccessful.
Headway upheld an allegation that Ms Moran had verbally threatened a brain-injured person while brandishing a pair of scissors. She had denied the claim.
Other allegations were not found to be sufficiently serious to warrant a conclusion of gross misconduct.
After studying evidence from the tribunal hearing at Bury St Edmunds, the three-member panel has now announced its judgement.
Dismissing both of Ms Moran's claims, chairman Brian Mitchell said it was accepted that she had made her complaints in good faith.
However, the tribunal panel were satisfied that the complaint. which in law amounted to a protected disclosure, made by Ms Moran had not been linked to the investigation and her subsequent dismissal.
Mr Mitchell said the tribunal were satisfied that Headway had reasonable grounds for believing that the scissors incident had taken place.
"In our judgement the incident itself of threatening a brain injured vulnerable adult with scissors coupled with offensive swear words was capable of being regarded as a dismissable offence" said Mr Mitchell.