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please help - son disclosed AS and is now facing dismissal

(24 Posts)
ThatVikRinA22 Wed 26-Feb-14 16:15:40

please can anyone help me quickly as im stuck as to what to say to him.

i have posted this in employment too - but thought to post here was prudent too....

In December 2013 my son took a job as a systems administrator, he had been working as a systems administrator previously.

2 weeks ago he was taken off probation, indicating he could do the job effectively.

Yesterday he had a meeting with management and he disclosed that he struggles with some organisation due to the fact he has aspergers syndrome.

today they have taken all his access to the servers away from him and given him menial tasks to do.
he has asked why and they have said it is basically because he disclosed his AS in the meeting yesterday. It is clearly discrimination.

now - here is the real problem.

When DS did his CV for his very first employer he was still at college doing A levels.
He put his predicted grades on his CV.
he went to uni to do computer science.
he got a foundation degree but dropped out 3 weeks before he graduated fully due to mental health issues and he was offered a job as a ssystems administrator down south which he took. He worked there for 6 months with no issues but was homesick and got the current job because it was more local and he moved back home.

Yesterday while going through the CV he realised (much to his horror) that he had merely updated his CV and added to it, He did not change his A level grades, he did not realise he had left his predicted grades on there - his actual grades were lower.

This basically looks as though he lied on his CV. He has explained the situation and said he did not deliberately mislead - and to try and explain himself he then declared his AS.

This is now being used against him and he says they are now contemplating dismissing him.

They also began asking him why he "failed" university. (he did not fail - he got a foundation degree and then dropped out - but he can think on his feet and just sat and took all this)

He can do the job but he does get stressed and panics when people shout at him - they have said because he panics people perceive problems to be his fault when in fact it may be a server going down or something external which he then has to fix - thats his job -

what i am failing to understand is that 2 weeks ago they took him off probation and were happy with him.
yesterday he declared his disability.
today they are talking about dismissal and have taken his job off him and given him menial tasks - he is having to go through a 100 page document and copy and paste bits from it to another document.

he is capable of the job. he has proved that.

They actually told him today that they have removed him from the job due to his disclosure of AS and they "want to reduce the risk to the business" - they actually said that.

please can anyone advise?

thank you!

PolterGoose Wed 26-Feb-14 16:27:28

He needs to get a paper trail sorted. A bit like we do with schools. An email to his boss asking for clarification following the meeting?

He needs legal advice. The NAS might help, or do you have access to legal help as part of your work employee staffline/professional organisation or even as part of your home or car insurance, eg I have access to free half hour with Thompson's as part of my union membership and that plus our staffline thing can be used by family members.

It's going to be tricky, they could legitimately dismiss him for the CV thing, he has fucked up there without a doubt.

Is is a big organisation he's working for? Can he ask for an OH referral?

MyCatIsFat Wed 26-Feb-14 22:09:17

Oh God Vic. Just when it was all going so well.

The problem is that he knows, and you know and I know that they're trying to dismiss him because he has AS, but you will never be able to prove it without witnesses or something in writing.

What they will do is say that there was a discrepancy in the CV and once they discovered that they felt they had to dismiss him.

So they'll use the CV error to cover their backs while actually dismissing him for having AS.

TBH, I'd walk away. If there was no CV problem it may be worth challenging them, as he had recently passed his probation. Bath the CV issue adds a very difficult dimension to it all.

Can he try to negoiate an agreed termination. He will go quietly if they promise to give him a good reference. It sounds like a ciop out but what sort of working life would he have if he stayed with that company, knowing that they are just discrimminatory fuckwits. They'd find something else to blame on him before long.

zzzzz Wed 26-Feb-14 23:54:56

How and when did they find out about the grades discrepancy?

ThatVikRinA22 Thu 27-Feb-14 02:29:15

he told them. as soon as he realised. he had a one to one with a new manager because they are due this pci inspection - he was going through his cv and he realised he had not amended his predicted grades since he wrote it so he told his manager as soon as he saw it.

he is not dishonest.

the thing is they have actually told him that they have removed him from his post due to him disclosing his AS.

they have said they have not dealt with AS before and want to minimise the risk to the business - yet 2 weeks ago they took him off probation and obviously did not think he posed a risk.

im sad for him that his honesty in both the cv discrepancy and the disclosure of his AS has resulted in him effectively losing his job.

im also pissed off that he was still "on call" out of hours tonight - he fixed and diagnosed a problem in his own time - so it seems he is ok to be on call out of hours when no one else is available but during office hours he is a risk???

had he been the sort of person who would have said it was no longer his problem he could have left the issue and not bothered to fix it - but he didnt. he diagnosed the problem, fixed the problem, and then emailed management to say he had been contacted out of hours as the sys admin and diagnosed a problem, and said how he fixed it.

he said he hoped they would think better of him for doing it. sad

i have had a good cry. and wine.

zzzzz Thu 27-Feb-14 06:53:27

I think legal advice would be a good idea.

The cv is a bit of a red herring.

The point is not to "force them to employ him". The point is to protect disable people from being sacked for their disability.

As an aside it would be a VERY unusual IT dept/company that didnt contain individuals with ASD.

AgnesDiPesto Thu 27-Feb-14 12:32:12

Contact the council where he lives and ask what support they have for adults with autism struggling with employment. They may have a supported employment officer or autism lead who can go into the employer and explain what reasonable adjustments are needed.

For legal advice check home insurance which may provide cover or is he a member of a trade union? Mencap legal advice line is supposed to be good.

May need to pay for a solicitors letter confirming what was said and pointing out this is discrimination. But then suggesting the employer obtains autism training to put in place reasonable adjustments.

He may need to raise a formal grievance of discrimination but tbh when you do that 9 times out of 10 you end up leaving as life becomes so unpleasant.

Can he find out what A levels other people doing the system admin job have? If you can show other have been employed with similar / lower grades you can knock that issue out

troutsprout Thu 27-Feb-14 12:40:54

Oh blardy hell ... sad
Tbh I'd probably suggest negotiating a decent reference and then walking away too. The cv thing just makes it a bit too tricky I think... They can jump on that as an excuse anyway

Bilberry Fri 28-Feb-14 12:16:15

Agree with other's here. Unfortunately, lying (even unintentionally) on a cv is a valid reason for dismissal so while you and they know that is not the reason it would be difficult to prove (unless they put it in writing). First try to involve HR and occupational health who could explain AS and try to win his team round. if this fails you may be better cutting your losses and try to get them to agree to his resignation rather than dismissal as that would look better for the next employer (they would probably bite his hand off agreeing to this).

He should also redo his cv for every application to make sure it is not only up to date but tailored to the job he is applying for. As he now has valid work experience it may be a good idea to completely redesign his cv to emphasis this and 'demote' his school qualifications.

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 28-Feb-14 14:44:48

we have better news. I think initially they didnt know what to do with him, but they have obviously taken some advice and they are keeping him on.

They were going to remove his position but have decided not to do that either - but he is an asset as he is the only younger member of the team to know some of the old computer languages (he is self taught but very quick so now knows several languages) so they are going to utilise him on a project which requires his specialist knowledge of a particular long gone language.

he also gave management a list of ideas as to how he could improve his organisation etc. He had clearly thought it through and they seemed happy enough that he is trying to combat some of his difficulties.

so i will watch this space.

zzzzz Fri 28-Feb-14 14:48:34

Oh that is good news. grin

Honk honk

MyCatIsFat Fri 28-Feb-14 15:11:30

Phew!

So relieved!

He should negoiate a pay rise too (speaking as an ex systems administrator myself for a while). He would be hard to replace!

Well done.

PolterGoose Fri 28-Feb-14 15:48:48

What fantastic news. Well done your ds grin

youarewinning Fri 28-Feb-14 17:36:39

Wow - that's fantastic of your DS. (Shame it came to that though). I was especially impressed with him thinking to write a list of things he thinks they'd want him to improve . That requires some real empathetic skill.

I suspect your one proud mum tonight. thanks

ohmeohmyforgotlogin Fri 28-Feb-14 17:43:33

Saw your post yesterday but had nothing to offer. So pleased he has sorted something and they have seen the benefits that can come from employing someone with AS.

StarlightMcKingsThree Fri 28-Feb-14 19:16:59

Wow, I hope my Ds can advocate for himself as well as yours can as a young adult. You must be extremely proud.

AgnesDiPesto Fri 28-Feb-14 20:30:48

Wow great outcome. Do look at NAS or local authority info though. There are some people around who can work with employers to make changes and it might help to have an indep third party 'advising'. I think NAS service is called prospects.

HoleySocksBatman Sat 01-Mar-14 13:22:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bilberry Sat 01-Mar-14 20:09:53

Great news. They would have been idiots to get rid of him. It costs companies a lot to recruit and train staff so why go through all that again and risk getting someone duff when they already had someone good who was already trained!! Glad they've seen sense.

ilikemysleep Sat 01-Mar-14 23:35:44

Having autism can be an advantage to certain sectors of work. Has your DS heard of Specialisterne? They specialise in employing people with autism, very successfully - original office in Denmark (I think) now also in the UK:

http://uk.specialisterne.com/

If they would have persisted in trying to sack him b/c of his autism, the would have been in breach of the Equalities Act, BTW.

https://www.gov.uk/rights-disabled-person

glad they have decided better of it!

ilikemysleep Sat 01-Mar-14 23:36:17

Having autism can be an advantage to certain sectors of work. Has your DS heard of Specialisterne? They specialise in employing people with autism, very successfully - original office in Denmark (I think) now also in the UK:

uk.specialisterne.com/

If they would have persisted in trying to sack him b/c of his autism, the would have been in breach of the Equalities Act, BTW.

https://www.gov.uk/rights-disabled-person

glad they have decided better of it!

SanityClause Sat 01-Mar-14 23:43:51

I'm pleased it seems to be working out, now.

I once did a course as part of my work, where we were told that there is no limit to the amount of compensation that can be paid to someone if they are wrongfully dismissed because of a disability.

If he can join a union, he should. If he has any concerns, he should take legal advice.

bochead Sun 02-Mar-14 22:59:10

The Shaw Trust have some sort of deal with microsoft where they actively recruit and help run a training scheme for testers with a diagnosis. The trainees end the 2 year training (specially designed to include workplace social skills etc) on £40k a year so it's not to be sniffed at.

Plus the lady who runs the scheme for South Wales is a total genius in terms of mentoring and advice - I've met her, and shoved a few young, talented people her way in the days when I worked. As an organisation they also know a lot about helpful assistive technologies, (it may be something as simple as the mindmapping software I use to organise my dyslexic self or more sophisticated braile to text systems etc).

Do try getting in touch with the Shaw Trust as I have a feeling they'd be a great source of advice both now and in the future for your son's career development. (Sorry but I don't particularly rate the NAS).They are a national charity but do different stuff in different areas.

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Mar-14 23:51:21

thats interesting bochead thanks. definitely not to be sniffed at!

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