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DH has been dismissed for gross misconduct... what next?

(128 Posts)
carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 21:47:21

Hi all, I really hope someone can give us some advice. I'm a bit of a nervous wreck at the moment. I've been a SAHM for 11 years, with 3 DCs. Having had my first child very young, I have had little work experience, and all of them in entry-level positions, so don't have a CV to speak of. We've always relied on DH's income, which was decent enough, but today things changed, as during a disciplinary meeting, he was dismissed straight away for gross misconduct.

This was due to an incident where he failed to inform his manager of an issue as well as deliberate falsification of documents to cover up the issue. This was when he was made to work 9 days consecutively without off days, and on that particular day, he worked for 24 hours (yes, 24 hours) and was so knackered at the end of that, that when the issue arose, he chose to falsify records so he could come home to catch some rest.

He admitted all the charges against me and stressed to the hearing that he was overworked and tired when he made the mistake, due to working an extra night, weekend shifts and call outs without overtime pay due to a colleague being on long term sickness. These haphazard working hours have been going on since his colleague went off on sick leave round about a year ago.

They dismissed him today, reason being a breakdown of trust, as he was a supervisor. He's read somewhere that if he is dependant on drugs, they can not sack him but must get him into rehab while allowing him to keep his job. He has been a regular cannabis smoker for the past year since his job shift patterns changed to accomodate his long term sick colleague, because he was so stressed out with all the extra work, he needed help to sleep.

It's not the right thing to do, I know, and he feels really remorseful for the way things have turned out. Not that the cannabis was a main reason why he did what he did, but it could have played a part. He's wondering if he could appeal his dismissal raising the cannabis dependency issue as a reason, and thereby have a shot at keeping his job, while he actually goes looking for a new one? He has not been happy for the past year. Our family life has suffered a lot because he was always on call, doing shift work (when he shouldn't, because his contract states his job hours should really be 9 to 5 Monday to Friday)...

Do you think he has a chance of winning his appeal and keeping his job and getting rehab from the company?

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 21:48:30

Should have said "He admitted all the charges against him" rather... sorry. sad

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 21:50:23

Should have added that it's in his company policy to send employees to free rehab if they have drug dependency problems. He should have raised it at the disciplinary meeting as an issue, but he didn't, because he really didn't think they would sack him, and he thought it wouldn't be wise to let on that he actually has developed a problem with the cannabis.

TeamEdward Tue 25-Feb-14 21:53:55

I have no experience in this, so no constructive advice to offer, but here wine sounds like you could do with a glass!

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 22:34:57

Thanks TeamEdward.

FarToGo Tue 25-Feb-14 22:45:23

Does he belong to a union?
I don't really have much advice but it would be really beneficial to have a union rep on his side to construct an appeal case.

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 22:52:41

Unfortunately not. His workplace is not unionised. They are not paid overtime even though they have to work overtime, etc.

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 22:53:51

He considered joining a union before, but he decided against it because he said he knew it would scupper his chances of a promotion if the place got wind of the fact he's a union member.

AlpacaYourThings Tue 25-Feb-14 22:58:34

Has he spoken to ACAS? Did he get a chance to appeal their decision?

I'm sorry he was in such a difficult situation.

ReadyToPopAndFresh Tue 25-Feb-14 22:59:32

yikes, get your dh to call http://www.acas.org.uk in the morning. See if they can help with the situation..

ReadyToPopAndFresh Tue 25-Feb-14 23:00:16

xposted! they really are helpful. They gave me some maternity advice that basically shut my employers up sharpish.

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 23:00:35

His workplace also has a policy of not giving references. He knew this because another employee got dismissed last year and she tried to get a reference from the company when she went looking for a new job, but they just would not give it. All they would give was the dates of when she started work and stopped working there. So if he goes looking for another job, he would never get a reference from them, which may be advantageous in that this disciplinary would not be divulged to future employers, I guess. But it's a small consolation.

He has had around 7 years of consistent, good track record. No sickies in the last 3 years. And that sickie record was only broken once in the last 7 years when he caught a severe case of the flu 4 years ago, and that was it. He went to work like clockwork every day he was on. He never complained. He covered for colleagues when they needed help. Just so gutted really... all that didn't mean a thing to his bosses, it seemed. I'm just... not even sure what to do next. Or how to help.

Never claimed benefits in our lives. Don't even really know where to start. Maybe we'll go down to the One Stop Shop tomorrow to ask about it... sad

BikeRunSki Tue 25-Feb-14 23:01:16

ACAS!!!!

BikeRunSki Tue 25-Feb-14 23:01:54

X post

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 23:03:17

I will get him to call ACAS tomorrow. Is there any other helpful organisation or places that can advice further? Thank you all so much for your replies so far. Really appreciate it. I have not shed a tear so far in front of him or the kids but poor him... when he came home he started crying inconsolably. I had to hold back my tears to reassure him everything will be alright sad

SomewhereBeyondTheSea Tue 25-Feb-14 23:03:22

Are you in the US?

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 23:05:00

No in England.

SomewhereBeyondTheSea Tue 25-Feb-14 23:05:17

Because if you're in the UK then your workplace doesn't need to be unionised in order for you to be represented by a union.

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 23:06:14

Really? We don't know that. So do you mean he can approach a union for help now?

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 23:06:46

Who should he call in particular do you know? Sorry if I sound really thick.

AlpacaYourThings Tue 25-Feb-14 23:06:57

If you have no joy with ACAS you may want to talk to CAB to look at the benefits you may be entitled to.

Look I know this is awful BUT this is a job that's stressed him out so much he's developed a major cannabis habit and was working 24 hours at a time. His employers sound like gits to boot. Tbh I would look on this as a blessing in disguise. Lots of places only give dates of service in a reference. Have a look around and see what jobs are out there. If you could get something in the evenings - Tesco or similar then you may find you can make ends meet with a lot less stress.

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 23:09:25

He was in the management team. He knows from meetings with management that they were really afraid of workers joining union. His managerial colleague nearly had a fit when he found out one of DH's subordinates was a union member. DH just told me there is no way a union will help him now because he chose not to join one back then.

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 23:11:17

I totally agree btw that his employers treated him badly. He knows.

carrottyjuice Tue 25-Feb-14 23:13:58

yes he is looking to find any odd job or low paid job now to make ends meet.

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