An employee was made redundant and given the required period of notice by his employer under the guise that his role within the business was no longer economical to retain.
The Employment Relations Authority upheld the employee’s personal grievance claim for unjustified dismissal.
The ERA found that the employee had not been adequately consulted with about the redundancy, and that the redundancy was not genuine. The ERA held that the employer had other reasons for terminating the employee, namely his poor performance.
The ERA awarded the employee $15,000 compensation for hurt and humiliation. The employee had been working for the employer for over 20 years and was deeply affected by his dismissal. The employee received no acknowledgement or recognition from the employer on his final day of work.
Despite the controversy and emotion it arouses, redundancy is, at law, just another reason for dismissal. A fair and reasonable process must be used, always acting in good faith, when any proposed restructuring process is initiated that could result in redundancy. There must always be genuine reasons that can be demonstrated when disestablishing an employee’s position. Employment law today obligates employers to be more transparent with their justification than ever before.