Employer using my injury as a reason for disciplinary.

Discussion in 'Army Reserve' started by Dieter_Schmidt, May 20, 2012.

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  1. I work for the Co-op, and they've recently brought in a new system for dealing with sicknesses. After 4 absences in a 12 month period, it triggers an investigation. It's supposed to catch out skivers. Back in November, i was injured at Catterick, whilst on CIC, and ended up being off work for 3 weeks. Despite the fact that i saw 2 medics, 1 military doc and eventually a civvy doc when i got home, my employer is still including these 3 weeks as 'absence', even though i have given them plenty proof from my doctor that i was injured. As i was off work for one day last week, this has brought my 12 month absence total to 4, thus triggering an investigation, which i'll probably experience sometime next week. Although dismissal is unlikely, this 3 week absence is still the difference between an investigation and no investigation, so it could potentially, however slim the chances are, be the difference between a job and no job. My question is, can my employer legally use that absence, as my injury sustained whilst on duty?
  2. Ask HR for the CoOps policy towards Reserve Forces. Could be you have a spiteful Manager who is reading the rules their way.
  3. There's a massive differance between a company's internal disciplinary proceedings and employment law. Should shit hit the fan and they take action against you throw the terms ''natural justice'' and ''fair and proper procedure'' at your HR dept. and you'll soon be in the clear.
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  4. Sabre may be worth a try, I cant see how they can use a legitimate injury against you though? Did you get doctor notes etc?
  5. Contradictory. In the title you say disciplinary but in the text you say investigation.

    The investigative interview will determine whether or not your absences are such that disciplinary action is mandated under your employer's disciplinary process.

    Why should you be exempted from a process that presumably applies to all employees. Are you special in some way? How is a STAB derived absence being 'used' rather than the other three absences?

    Absent 4 times in a year - If you turned up for work a little more often your employer wouldn't need to expend resources on understanding the reasons for and dealing with your continual absences.
  6. Dieter, was the 3 weeks in one block? If so, it should only count as 1 absence, with the 1 day as the 2nd absence. A lot of companies are using this method now, as you say to sort out the skivers, but if you have a genuine reason for your absence, there should be nothing to worry about. This is just a method to get rid of the *******, but can also be used to see if there's anything that they can do to help you in future. I've been part of one of these and if there is a genuine reason for absence, most companies will help out with time off for Drs/Hospital appts if the underlying reason is known.
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  7. Ah yes the "Bradford Factor" most companies are now using this or a similar system, short answer will be of HR sickness is sickness regardless of what or how.
    I knew a lady who was given an "Improvement target" whilst having Cancer, I kid you not.

    Enjoy your humiliating time being patronised by a HR bod, being told not to be ill for 3 months!

    "My question is, can my employer legally use that absence, as my injury sustained whilst on duty?" _ YES!
  8. Although used to highlight skivers (as you put it) many employers now have a system of interview people who have a 'history' of absences, many use it as a method to highlight recurring problems, and to ensure they are not work related, if they are work related they are then in a position to rectify any work based problems (damage limitation on the possibility of compen claims). Equally they are used to identify the ones who seem to be sick during school hols, after important sporting events etc or the ones who always seem to be ill on a Friday/Monday etc. if your injury and subsequent illnesses are genuine I doubt you have much to worry about, although if all (or even more than one) your absences are down to your extra curricular activity this may raise concerns with your employer. But which ever way you look at it, they have to include the 3 weeks absence in your history as you where absent, just as they would have to include any absence caused by a work related injury

    that said, each employers has its own policies regarding absenteeism and a set criteria for what follow up action is taken in regards to what action is taken. In my case a couple of years ago i had a total of 21 days absence in a year (over four periods, 1 work related injury, one chest infection, one flue and a screaming case of the shits) I was taken to one side and told to buck up as i had the worst record on site, I pointed out that several had more periods of absence, and got the answer that it was only a day or two at a time for them, I also pointed out that a middle manager had a single period of absence in excess of six weeks, but got the answer but she has had an operation (elective breast reduction). Same employer allowed me two days compassionate off each for the death of my mother, sister and Bro in law (all within a 2 month period) then wondered why i got the hump when a female member of staff was allowed 4 days for an uncle and a male member of staff got two weeks for his father, the answer I got was they are younger than you and it hit them pretty hard FFS, apart from the wench and son they were all the immediate family I had

  9. Same boat here....Got flown home three weeks before end of tour on H13 with a knackered Gallbladder, Army passed me off to the NHS after Demob (Illness not attributable to the Service) But lost my docs in the handover this was Last March...Got my Op in Aug and had to take three weeks off then was back at work two weeks and straight in for a Maximizing Attendance Meeting with HR. Charming =)
  10. Most companies have an attendance management policy usually in 3 stages with a trigger point. The investigation should assess the effect of you injury on doing your job. If there are problems reasonable adjustments have to be made by the employer. Doesn't matter if you have sick certs it's a company process.
  11. OldSnowy

    OldSnowy LE Moderator Book Reviewer

    To be fair to your employer, if you are injured on TA training or just while painting the shed, it's the same to them - and they have no reason at all to treat youany diiferently that they would someone who was hurt playing football at the weekend, for example.

    Harsh, but true: TA membership does not mean you are 'special', I'm afraid.
  12. Means "talked down to".
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  13. Wordsmith

    Wordsmith LE Book Reviewer

    Retailers like the Co-op have lot of low-paid, poorly motivated staff. In recent years changes to legislation have made it a lot easier to 'pull a sickie'. By way of a defence mechanism, companies have developed internal review processes. It's not going to stop the hard core piss takers from pulling sickies, but it acts as a bit of a deterrent by letting the average worker know their time is being monitored.

    In theory at least, the first stage should be to winnow out the genuine cases from the piss takers. As you've got proof that you received an injury through your TA activities and that you promptly sought medical treatment, the initial interview should be the end of the process. Your absences triggered an investigation - the investigation showed the absences had a reasonable cause. The investigation should only go further if you've sustained an injury liable to make it difficult to perform your duties at the Co-op.

    For the work shy, the process serves as a warning that 'big brother is watching you'. When people know their absences are being monitored, they tend to take less time off. If necessary, the employer will also make the point by sending them to a company appointed doctor 'out of concern for their health'. This might happen if someone was persistently off work with claims of back pain or headaches. This will tend to have one or two outcomes;

    -- If the person is genuinely ill, treatment could be arranged. For example back pain could be down to poor lifting technique at work.
    -- If the person's taking the piss, the doctors report comes back saying effectively "can't find anything wrong".

    Either would tend to reduce future absences.

    What I'd suggest you do is ask HR for a copy of the procedure they're following - there's no reason why they can't let you have it. I'd then read the procedure through to see what's going to happen. You'll probably find you can bring along your own representative to the meeting. What I'd then suggest you do is go along to the meeting by yourself. If its routine, you'll be in and out in 10 minutes. If the meeting does take an worrying turn, ask for the meeting to be stopped while you go and get your representative. (They're not there to take part - only witness what is said). And even then, were the company to take it further, there would have to be written notification given and further meetings held.

    Personally, I'd guess that this investigation is routine and you've got nothing to worry about.

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  14. Ord_Sgt

    Ord_Sgt RIP

    The chances are you won't be able to pursue this to its fair conclusion. Personally I'd deck the **** and take what satisfaction you can from that.
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  15. Did you get paid by the army after they injured you and you couldn't work, did your employer pay you?

    Your employer could argue that the army injured you its not their fault.

    There was a case a few years ago where a person who played football on weekends got sacked from work for keeping getting injured and going sick.

    Could you have not gone to work injured? then they would have not been absent, they would then have to give you a suitable job whilst recovering.