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To want my boss to get his comeuppance

(28 Posts)

Boss stormed up to me today and demanded I tell him if/when I'm going to have more kids. I said, honestly, that I'm not sure.
He also knows that I had a stillborn a couple of years ago and fertility problems. sad
He then started ranting about the hassle of maternity leave cover and paying extra wages.
He went on to say that he wishes that all female staff were sterilised to save him a bother.
This after many other crappy things he has said or done. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to prove most he has done but I live in hope that at some point he will get what he deserves - the sack. Bullying arsehole that he is.angry

MaryRobinson Tue 05-Mar-13 22:48:48

Just ask him to put his questions in writing.

Has a colleague just told h she's expecting.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly I'm sorry that your baby was stillborn. Have a hug

mamakoula Tue 05-Mar-13 22:50:04

Sorry to hear this. I know you cannot but I would love to ask if he could give that to me in writing or perhaps send a memo to HR with his suggestions.

It really is dreadful especially with your own sad loss.

I hope somebody comes along who can advise you how to deal with him.

LadyWidmerpool Tue 05-Mar-13 22:51:11

What a toad. Sorry, that's insulting to toads.

NaturalBlondeYeahRight Tue 05-Mar-13 22:53:07

Bloody hell, don't suppose anyone else heard did they? Big company or small? (Not that it should make a difference, just thinking about HR)

We try to get him on a paper trail but he always leaves the particularly vile stuff for a one-to-conversation.
Yes, another member of staff had just been to tell him of her pregnancy.
I think I just need to get out.

NaturalBlondeYeahRight Tue 05-Mar-13 22:58:17

Record him? That's probably not allowed is it?

MousyMouse Tue 05-Mar-13 22:59:43

boss as in middle manager?
or boss as in own the company?
can you write up 'minutes' of this talk to have a paper trail ("as just discussed...")

Can you not send him a 'further to our conversation' email, outlining his questions and copy in his boss? Insensitive git angry

HerrenaHarridan Tue 05-Mar-13 23:08:11

Is he properly in charge or is there someone you can complain to?

If a , look for another job ASAP!
If b, go and lodge a formal complaint. Write letter, hand in person.

Be completely upfront with his boss and make sure they know that he has also been bullying and inappropriate with other staff.
He is breaking the law and should be stopped.

If b fails and going higher again doesn't work. See a

I'm so sorry for you loss, I know this wankstain is the least of your worries but freeing yourself from his tyranny would definitely be a plus.

ChairmanWow Tue 05-Mar-13 23:08:35

Covert recording can't be used unfortunately. Shame really because so many bullies are clever enough to wait until their target is on their own.

If he won't confirm it in writing another way of doing it is to email him outlining the content of the conversation and confirming that he asked you those questions. See what his response is - he then either has to deny the whole thing in which case you can say 'okay then, so you don't need to know anything about my family planning and will not discuss it with me again' or he confirms him in which case you have evidence.

Even with no witnesses if he has spoken to other female colleagues in a similar way you can make a collective complaint about him. What a total arse and how horribly insensitive about your stillbirth angry. He deserves everything he gets.

NapaCab Tue 05-Mar-13 23:24:09

'I think I just need to get out'

Yes, you do. My biggest regret in my former job is not leaving sooner. I worked there for 5 years, 2 years longer than I wanted to but I stayed because of the maternity leave. I was trying to get pregnant but had a miscarriage and other fertility issues. Eventually I did get pregnant and they tried to make me redundant - illegally. Had to go to a solicitor, threaten tribunal etc. I got a settlement and even then with the force of a good employment expert (my solicitor) behind me, they tried to scrimp on my payment, claiming I had been there 4 years instead of 5! I had been there 4 years and 11 months hmm.

In my experience, all you can do with sexist scumbag employers like this is get out. Even if you get things in writing (I had a lot in writing) and a pretty rock-solid case, the chances of winning at tribunal are limited and the amount you can be paid is limited too unless you have a really unique set of circumstances. Employment law in the UK is shockingly unfair. Bad bosses like yours rarely get their comeuppance in a legal setting. Here in the US, where I'm currently living, employers can be sued much more easily and for a broader range of abuse and harassment, like what you are experiencing.

Sorry to hear about your stillbirth and fertility issues also. It's a really painful thing to go through. Don't stay in a situation that can only make you feel worse. Get your CV out there today smile

HollyBerryBush Wed 06-Mar-13 05:52:38

Diarise. get other ladies on side,

leave, making sure you have a new job. Then sue for constructive dismissal.

FellNel Wed 06-Mar-13 06:00:55

I really do not understand why covert recording is not admissable in court. It's a mystery to me. If some one had done something wrong they've done something wrong. If you can prove it then what's the problem? confused

HollyBerryBush Wed 06-Mar-13 06:28:06

Presumably because the conversation can be lead or directed without the persons knowledge, or even edited.

ChairmanWow Wed 06-Mar-13 07:39:19

Covert recording of another individual is deemed to be a breach of the Human Rights Act, specifically the right to privacy. Tribunals will allow a covert recording of a disciplinary hearing or appeal but I wouldn't think private conversations would be admissible. I think there are some exceptional circumstances where that may not be the case. Very frustrating in the case of this guy, but I guess it cuts both ways - we don't want our managers covertly recording us.

Re constructive dismissal, these are the hardest cases of all to win and not something to rely on, particularly if you're relying on one-to-one conversations as evidence.

Wondering if you're in a union as you need advice and support. Might be worth joining if not. But also see if you can get support from colleagues and find out if he's behaved the same towards any of them. Leaving is an option but for most of us that takes a while, plus it allows this guy to carry on being a sexist bully.

Hope you can at the very least find a colleague to give you some support.

olgaga Wed 06-Mar-13 07:45:25

I would definitely send him a "further to our discussion when you asked me...and commented... I would like some clarification as to current policy."

TBH if this happened as described you would have a legitimate grievance against him, and if your employer failed to reel him in, a potential SD claim to an Employment Tribunal.

FreshLeticia Wed 06-Mar-13 07:46:36

I really agree with the opinions up post: you should have followed it up straigth away with a 'further to your recent questions' email, asking him to detail what he wants to know so that you can take advice on what you need to answer. Copy in his boss and any other person in the office who has has inappropriate questioning. Also the union if you are in one. And if you are not, now is the time to join, you may need support if you get further hassle from this git.

Pollydon Wed 06-Mar-13 08:15:19

This man is a bully, you do not have to out up with this, do you have a H.R. dept you can speak to ?

footballmum Wed 06-Mar-13 08:21:28

He can't use the Human Rights argument to defend himself against a discriminatory act, particularly if he denies it.

Pop your phone on record every time he comes into your office and the next time he makes a blatantly discriminatory comment, make a formal grievance to his boss. Set out the conversation in writing and if he denies it then produce the tape recording. Because you have caught him out in a lie it would then be admissible in Tribunal.

FasterStronger Wed 06-Mar-13 08:29:27

I think you need proper legal advice from an employment law professional. the ACAS helpline is very good for a free service www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=2042

MTBMummy Wed 06-Mar-13 09:18:37

I had a boss who told me I was a useless mother because I was working (this was the month after I returned to work) and another colleague who was mates with the boss, who took every opportunity to tell me I was a failure and letting my child down by not being there for her.

I tried speaking to HR and their response was "X and Y would never say those things, are you sure you're not being over sensitive?" They were always aggressive and bullying on email, but nothing that could be used for a disciplinary, I left to join a much better company and did a dance of joy when my old boss was eventually sacked, but I know he'll just go on and do the same to another poor woman.

Ionasky Wed 06-Mar-13 09:24:31

I think you should look for a new job too - telling you how supportive 2 employers have been through fertility issues and the inevitable round of taking time off work for illnesses kids get when they first go to nursery isn't going to help you, just wanted to re-iterate that you shouldn't put up with it - he's toxic. Catching him out is one thing, but you should get away from this bad relationship as soon as you can.

Ionasky Wed 06-Mar-13 10:08:59

oooh sorry, I had one more thought: you should start asking him if he's feeling well - enquire about his health in a way that implies that you suspect he has issues 'you seem very stressed etc' - he won't like that very much and may think twice...

Ionasky, I love the idea of asking for his health implying that he is losing it. Ooh he won't like that but it can't be held against me. grin

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