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Work grievance

debbielkldebbielkl Member Posts: 36 Listener
edited December 2020 in Employment and careers
Hi, ok a long one but here goes..
I work for a large well known company and have for around 9 years. 
3 years ago I developed and was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis (worst for me is my jaw it’s restricted in opening pings and aches). I was moved to an admin role but declined home working. I had to walk in socks into work my feet were so swollen but I did it.
12 weeks ago I came into work and was advised the admin role had gone and I was going to be customer service, talking all day... I advised the pain would be unbearable. I had an occ health who agreed it will do more damage. I’m due to get a splint fitted in feb and I think it’s to be worn 24 hours a day. (I can’t wear it talking all day)
I’ve raised a grievance at work. Today they have come back advising some breaks and I could change my shifts. This wouldn’t work for me, once my jaw flares up I will then be managed under normally capability. They said they believe it is a good adaptation.
there is more to this that I won’t go into the company are trying to get one office closed down - the one I work in. 
please be honest am I being unreasonable? Or do I take this further. I won’t be offended at all. They lied in the report so I am really annoyed. 
Just to add I am off sick at the moment at stress is too much. 
Do I hand my notice in and give up or do I take it further. My doctor is backing me up I just don’t know what to do. 😭


  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger

    You shouldn't just hand in your notice without first getting some expert advice and for this i'd advise you to ring ACAS.

    Proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice I have given to members here on the community.
  • debbielkldebbielkl Member Posts: 36 Listener
    Thanks, I am ringing them tomorrow morning. I’m not sure I can afford a solicitor so will see what they say. 
  • woodbinewoodbine Community Co-Production Group Posts: 4,441 Disability Gamechanger
    Please don't just hand in your notice, are you a member of a union? Have you raised this with OH again?
    "Putting a child into care, isn't caring for a child" (T.Rhattigan)
  • debbielkldebbielkl Member Posts: 36 Listener
    We don’t have a union, I’ll speak to Acas tomorrow. They’ve offered OH again. The response was let’s get another OH report done they may agree with our breaks this time. (They didn’t like the first one as it didn’t work for them)
  • cupcake88cupcake88 Member Posts: 952 Pioneering
    @debbielkl hi Debbie like advised above don’t hand your notice in contact acas there really helpful . I personally would put in writing what you feel will help if the admin job isn’t available any more is there another role you can do or did you want to work from would that help ? I think you have every right to make suggestions and your employer has to meet you half way or at least try other wise it’s failure to make reasonable adjustments Which is disability discrimination. If your not happy and you feel they could make reasonable adjustments you can take it further .

    i went to acas when my employer discriminated against me for having a mental illness they did a lot to me but they also failed to make simple adjustments . They ended up settling out of court a few days before the pre hearing so give up . 

    i hope all goes well Keep us updated
  • debbielkldebbielkl Member Posts: 36 Listener
    @cupcake88 thank you, I hope you feel better now it’s over. It sounds awful
    I haven’t slept, my Heads spinning I will have to represent myself. My company do this to people all the time and pay out like you a day before court. 
    On indeed it shows the company excellent to work for, when really most staff are off sick,being pushed out.
    anyway thank you and I will keep you updated ☺️
  • janer1967janer1967 Member Posts: 11,144 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi as mentioned whatever you do dont hand in your notice even if you are unable to work . Can you get hold of the company policy for dismissal on  medical grounds and have a read. 

    Also if you job no longer exists this may be a redundancy situation if they cannot offer you a suitable alternative role

    Did OH request a medical report from your GP or specialist or just make recommendations on their own assessment, if they are referring you back then I would suggest you ask them to do this

    ACAS are the best to get advice from in this situation also dont worry at this stage about solicitors it hasnt gone that far yet to need one and you may get a satisfactory result
  • debbielkldebbielkl Member Posts: 36 Listener
    @janer1967 thank you. I will have a look at that policy.
    I’ve spoke to Acas today who suggested let’s start the conciliation. I’ve also spoke to a solicitor who could help me appeal the grevience response... it’s awful. In the report they adjust the job to suit them. The minutes are all wrong.They’ve not included when I mentioned I will have to remove the splint for work all day - against medical advice. I think I may let the solicitor do the appeal and conciliation, we can’t afford it but I’m finding it too much.

  • janer1967janer1967 Member Posts: 11,144 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi again I wouldnt involve solicitors as yet as most employers only allow a union rep or work colleague tio represent you so would not allow solicitor involvement unless it goes to tribunal that is when they get involved

    You must follow the company policy to try and get a resolution and complete all the stages as set out in policy

    Also be aware some solicitors will try and get you on board saying how they can get you what you want but in reality they are just after tour money

    I understand the stress this is causing you have you spoken to XAB or welfare rights they may have suggestions on who could support you
  • debbielkldebbielkl Member Posts: 36 Listener
    We don’t have a union. Acas recommended I speak to a solicitor, I know I did think they just want the money and it’s £220 an hour. They was able to give more than I thought but I’m not sure what to do. 
    Thanks yes I have made sure I followed the policy ( they haven’t though) 
  • cupcake88cupcake88 Member Posts: 952 Pioneering
    Hi there @debbielkl
    great advice above just to add I contacted the equality advisory support service  0808 800 0082 that’s the phone number they Helped me a lot they told which part of the equality act my employers was breaking the knowledge and support of them and from this forum gave me the knowledge and confidence to fight For what was Right . Like your self I had no money for a solicitor I got 30 mins legal advise for free but that was it if I wanted to hire some one it would of been a fortune and it’s rare that they take on no win no fee in these cases, I wasn’t apart of any union either . 

    also @janer1967 was so helpful And also other people on scope there support got me threw a stressful time . 

    I personally wasnt well enough to be working  I was only there for 4 weeks but they didn’t help the situation there was things they could of done to make my life easier and support me instead i was bullied for having a mental illness , when I asked for reasonable adjustments to be made I was told no and that if I was going to carry on being mentally ill then when I wasn’t able to work there they actually put that in a email which was horrible as I don’t choose to be mentally ill staff purposely went out there way to treat me badly so did management there was a lot more than just failing to make reasonable adjustments in my case but that was one of the main reasons I had to leave because my mental health went down hill even more , I was called retarded in a staff group chat by the night manager which my friend sent me a screen shot of so they knew I had a case but they dragged it out as long as they could .  I first when I left raised greievence again by letter after contacting the number above I was given tips on how to write my letter I sent it and of course it was ignored , I got acas involved they agreed to take part in early conciliation with my self via acas they decided to mess bout and waste a whole month then told acas they did not want to settle with the amount I was asking for they said no to any amount . 

    So then acas gave me a reference number I filled out a form to apply for tribunal explaining all what happened to me at the work place and why I felt I was discriminated against listing the types of discrimination so yours would come under failed to make reasonable adjustments for example . They then applied for a extension via the tribunal again they were given a extra month we was both given a new pre hearing date and literally 2 days before pre hearing they sent me a silly offer via acas I said no and we settled on a offer I was happy with via accas . Even tho at times I wanted to give up I knew I had to carry on so they will think twice bout treating some one with a disability like that again .

    I personally have been put off from ever working again all tho there are nice places out there to work with nice management I have chosen working is not good for me especially as I’m having my trauma therapy now .

    it may be more awkward following those steps I did because you still work there but because you are still they’d there not going to want it to go far and will work some thing out for you as they should . 

    I have been threw it my self and I took it all the way and was prepared to go all
    the way not just for my self but every one with a disability . 

    Keep going and you will end up with the right result . Let’s us know how you get on . You will find that seen as they realise your not playing about they will sit up and take notice 
  • debbielkldebbielkl Member Posts: 36 Listener
    edited December 2020
    @cupcake88 wow that is disgusting, Some people are vile. You are unbelievably strong to get through that ☺️

    I’m not actually at work, I’ve been off sick since they changed the role it’s been about 11 weeks now. They are ringing me for a welfare catch up Monday.
    There is more to mine but would never stop. My husband was a manager there over 10 years, he left as the pressure he was being told to put on staff got too much. 
    I will ring them actually I had been trying to look on the website for myself. Today I want  to find out off acas

    1. Shall I appeal the grievance with the law they are breaking? And update the minutes taken as they are incorrect and missed out a lot.
    also they’ve said we won’t uphold the grievance as they adaptions offered are ok. 
    Breaks - OH advised against this as it still causes further damage.
    looks for another job
    or go straight to the ACAS mediation (forgot the name 🤭)

    2. They said I HAVE to now accept or decline... but i don’t know what happens if I decline. If I go back I’ll be off sick within days in pain and then managed out for too much time off. I’m not sure how or what to respond to the accept/ decline
  • Tori_ScopeTori_Scope Posts: 5,001

    Scope community team

    Were you able to get any answers today @debbielkl
    Online Community Coordinator, she/her

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  • debbielkldebbielkl Member Posts: 36 Listener
    Yes thank you. Acas were just unsure if to decline the adaptions, they think I will then be dismissed. 
    I’m going to appeal the decision and put the conciliation in tomorrow.
    thanks for all the advice. 
  • Tori_ScopeTori_Scope Posts: 5,001

    Scope community team

    Okay, I hope it all goes well @debbielkl :) Please keep us updated! 
    Online Community Coordinator, she/her

    Want to give us feedback? Complete our feedback form now.
  • cupcake88cupcake88 Member Posts: 952 Pioneering
    @janer1967 might be able to advise better with this question but if I was you personalY if that’s the choice and your not happy with it I personally would put it writing to them and explain your not happy and you feel they could do more because it is disability discrimination If they can make adjustments but just do not want too .

    i think if you was to say to them what you wish the outcome to be and if they refuse and you can not do the job they have offered due to your health I would go down the legal route and let them know that’s what you intend to do . Theres time limit is with tribunal so you said you have been off for 11 weeks well you have 3 months from when the last incident took place So them refusing to do any thing Verbally could count as the lady time but bare the time limit in mind . 

    If there saying take it or leave it sort of thing I would start the process now as you shouldn’t have to leave your job and if you have to then make sure you get composition .

    my case it very different to yours yeh they failed to make reasonable adjustments but it was  also direct discrimination and harassment plus I had emails from the owner critising People with mental illness . 

    But failiure to make reasonable adjustments is a reason why a lot of employers are taken to court . I’m by no means any sort of legal advisor but I went threw a situation similar and can share with you what I learnt and my experience.

    i feel that My old employers didn’t take me serious until they realised I wasn’t playing any more . They didn’t take my grievance serious , they didn’t take the early consiliation with acas serous , even when they realised I was proceeding to tribunal again they didn’t take it  serious it was when they’d were sent the pre hearing tribunal letter then 2 says before it that settled even tho they claimed they were all prepared to go to tribunal they felt for my health it be best if I settled lol they had no case basically they thought I would give up because Of my mental illness but I was determined so don’t give up . I would take this further if you feel that they could make a adjustment but there not so you would have to let acas know you will to take it further . 
  • debbielkldebbielkl Member Posts: 36 Listener
    An update on this, the grevience  appeal has come back, no change.. just adds there was a conflict of interest as my husband was managing me, my manager had left and it took then a year to replace. They was aware I had no manager. (He no longer works there) 
    They won’t accept my disability and make reasonable changes. It doesn’t look like they will deal with ACAS for conciliation so I am waiting for the deadline and will take further action. 
    I’m at a point now I can’t go back, my company hate people who speak it can damage the brand, they’ve made it so uncomfortable and lied.
    sorry for ranting.... 
  • janer1967janer1967 Member Posts: 11,144 Disability Gamechanger
    Dont apologise for the rant 

    Tend to agree you need to pursue the legal route now 
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