A courier who was told by bosses ‘we are not a charity’ after he suffered a heart attack and was refused sick pay has won nearly £30,000 for unfair dismissal.
Peter Strickland was ignored by his employers at All Job Trading Ltd after he was left unable to drive due to suffering a focal seizure resulting in blackouts.
David Gibson was his manager and he finally spoke to him to ask about his salary. He was then dismissed.
A 17-year-old courier, Mr. Strickland told an employment tribunal that he felt ‘humiliated.
Peter Strickland was ignored by his employers at All Job Trading Ltd after he was left unable to drive due to suffering a focal seizure resulting in blackouts
Employment judge Alan Strain awarded him nearly £25,000 for unfair dismissal and a further £5,000 for ‘injury to feelings’.
Judge Strain said that, based on the evidence presented by the claimant and the Tribunal’s findings, the claimant was absent from work as a result of his myocardial Infarction.
“The claimant has been fired without notice nor prior warning.
The first time that he realized was when, after making numerous attempts to clarify his position with the respondent’s status, he received hostility from Mr Gibson.
“The tribunal found that the termination of his employment was procedurally and substantively unfair in all circumstances.”
According to the tribunal, Mr Strickland started his career as a courier in 2002. He was then transferred from one company to another – All Job Trading Ltd in Bathgate West Lothian.
He primarily carried out work for DX Document Exchange, a private business-to-business network.
He had a cardiac arrest on November 13th, 2018 and needed to have surgery.
His hospital stay was interrupted by a focal seizure that left him blinded and without any awareness.
His licence was revoked and he was ordered to tell the DVLA about it. His wife informed his bosses.
After submitting sick notes, Mr Strickland was first paid sick leave. But, June next year, he realized he wasn’t being paid.
In the Tribunal judgment: “He called Tomas Jajko’s director to ask this question and was told that he was too busy talking to other people.”
The claimant tried to contact the respondent several more times about his sickness pay and employment status. He didn’t receive any reply.
“He sent texts and emails to respondent’s directors Tomas Jajko and David Gibson.
He finally spoke to Gibson over the phone, June 2019.
“Mr Gibson explained to the claimant, “We’re not a charitable organization you know.”
“The claimant believed that his employment was terminated as the respondent had not made any additional sick pay payments to him, and had stopped paying the respondent for such payment.
Judge Strain found that Mr. Strickland had suffered discrimination in the workplace and harassment from his bosses. Accordingly to their handling of the case, he was awarded a 10% uplift.
Judge said that comments to the effect the respondent wasn’t a charity were inappropriate, insensitive and unreasonable.
‘The remarks were clearly unwanted conduct related to his disability* and the tribunal had no doubt as to the impact of the comments on the claimant.
“The claimant was harmed by the comments. They created an infuriating, hostile, humiliating, offensive, and degrading environment.