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Old Apr 15th, 2016, 05:02 AM   1
ExpectingK
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Employer Advice


Hi. I haven't posted in a while. My daughter is now at School. The baby days seem so long ago.

Anyhow, back to my question(s). My partner runs a pub. In December he employed a new Front of House Manager, who then found out she was pregnant.

Unfortunately, this lady has not proven that she is as effective at her job as she led them to believe in her interview. She does not use her own initiatve, lacks respect from her team, and doesnt show the willingness that you would expect from a new employee.

She has had to undergo a couple of meetings related to her performance and failing to meet the requirements of the post. Had she not been pregnant then my partner would not have kept her on past her probation period. Even now he is very reulcant to follow the firms formal disciplinary procedure for fear of being sued for unfair dismissal due to her pregnancy.

This employee is struggling with her pregnancy and has required numerous days off sick, which often coincide with the busiest periods at the pub, such as the weekend and evenings. My partner agreed to alter the lady's working hours to give her more time between shifts.

Other members of staff are getting annoyed as they are being called in on their day off to cover when she calls in sick. Given that the pub is not yet in its busiest period, my partner is concerned how she will manage in the summer when she needs to be on her feet all day.

The baby is due mid August and she has indicated she intends to work right up to her due date, and return shortly after the birth. As a mother I realise how impractical her expectations are. Her role requires that she locks up occasionally and her childcare arrangements are unclear.

My partner has had to employ another bar person just in case this lady is absent. Ironically, this individual is already showing more promise after two weeks than the Manager. He is better qualified, stays later than his contracted hours, is offering suggestions to improve ways of working, and has even attended a local meeting in his own time on behalf of the pub.

Does anyone have any advice on what to do? My partner does not pay sick pay and she is not entitled to claim maternity pay from him as she was not employed long enough. I appreciate she can claim Maternity allowance if she needs to go on maternity leave early, but this is not for a while.

My partner does not have an alternative job to offer her. Yesterday she spent two hours sitting down doing a task that should have taken half an hour. This does not make a good impression on other members of staff. She frequently feels sick and dizzy and often leaves her shift early to go home. My partner had to lock up last night after starting work at 7.30am as she decided She was not able to remain.

I suffered with sickness until 17 weeks and so I can see things from her side. However, my partner cannot go on like this. Help!



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Old Apr 15th, 2016, 09:34 AM   2
Geebug x
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Hi lovely,

I am HR so hopefully will be able to help. The worst thing he has done here was pass her probation, just because she is pregnant doesn't mean she automatically gets to keep her job if she is rubbish! As long as your OH could have proven she wasn't performing as she should have done he had no reason to keep her. Although its difficult in the environment as in an office she would have had set objectives she needed to complete.

She can only seek unfair dismissal in court if her dismissal was because of birth, pregnancy or maternity leave - therefore your OH must provide written reasons, with evidence of why she is being dismissed, this way it would hold up in court. That's where your problem arises, as all the sickness she has had can easily be related to the pregnancy - it is very very rocky territory tbh, and is made worse by the fact that the person bought in to cover her is male!!

How many hours is she contracted? If I'm honest, we wouldn't even go near dismissing someone when they were pregnant as its a really tough one to prove the dismissal wasn't pregnancy related. He may have to just ride this out.

Have a look on here.

http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/a...ary-procedures

xx



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Old Apr 15th, 2016, 14:02 PM   3
ExpectingK
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Thank you


Thank you for replying. I think he just felt that whatever he did he risked being sued! If she failed the probabtion then he thought it would be turned round to being all about the pregnancy. Its such a difficult situation. He just wants continuity and she can't give it.

Sadly riding it out seems to only option.



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Old Apr 15th, 2016, 14:25 PM   4
Dinah93
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I was made redundant after 9 years and one manager commented 'we need a reliable team, we can't have that if you keep flitting off to have babies'. I met with a solicitor, he felt I had a very strong case however for a sex discrimination case I needed to provide the costs upfront, they would be reclaimed if I won, which is apparently standard. It would be a minimum of £3k, probably closer to £6k, and it has to be done within 6 months, which just wasn't a priority for me with a complex pregnancy and a newborn, I made the decision that I didn't want the stress.



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Old Apr 16th, 2016, 05:53 AM   5
RaspberryK
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dinah93 View Post
I was made redundant after 9 years and one manager commented 'we need a reliable team, we can't have that if you keep flitting off to have babies'. I met with a solicitor, he felt I had a very strong case however for a sex discrimination case I needed to provide the costs upfront, they would be reclaimed if I won, which is apparently standard. It would be a minimum of £3k, probably closer to £6k, and it has to be done within 6 months, which just wasn't a priority for me with a complex pregnancy and a newborn, I made the decision that I didn't want the stress.
That's rubbish from your solicitor, I was taking my employer to tribunal with the help of acas and representing myself although I was going to use a no win no fee solicitor I didn't want to share my payout.
They paid me off the week before the tribunal date and I got a nice four figure sum.
Pm me if you want any advice.
X



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Old Apr 16th, 2016, 06:07 AM   6
RaspberryK
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To the op;
Can your partner call ACAS?
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Old Apr 20th, 2016, 05:48 AM   7
LoveCakes
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It's a tricky one, she doesn't sound like she's up to the job but the reasons she has been off and unreliable recently are because of her pregnancy which is what the law protects. I'm sure she'd rather be well. Also you can't base decisions on what might happen with her childcare as it might be fine. I understand the others being peeved off at covering but it happens during pregnancy she can't help it, if people were fired for being off sick when pregnant it would be like the 60s when women couldn't work. I'm sure they don't care who is put out covering them when they are off sick. It's ip to the employer to make allowances unfortunately it puts pressure on smaller businesses.

It's not illegal to fire someone for being incompetent and it's good he has a record of meetings but he'd have to prove he tried to help and she was unwilling, or that she lied in her interview, maybe the interview or referee follow up weren't robust enough to evaluate her properly.



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