Worker Loses Constructive Dismissal Case

Wheelchair company technician Glen MacMillan has lost his Employment Relations Authority grievance claim for constructive and unjustified dismissal. He was employed by Seating to Go Limited (STGL), a provider of specialised wheelchair and seating assessment services for the Ministry of Health and ACC. His employers received a written complaint about a visit Mr MacMillan paid to a client on 2nd May 2012. It was alleged that he made abusive and derogatory comments about two "useless" directors, including one who "was Australian and [...]

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Bus driver fired for taking photos of children wins compensation

A school bus driver fired after taking photos of the primary pupils on his route has won more than $14,500 from the employer who sacked him. John Grant was fired from his job as a Hebberds Bus Services driver for Riwaka School, about 5km north of Motueka near Nelson last September. He took his dismissal to the Employment Relations Authority (ERA), saying he was unjustifiably disadvantaged and dismissed. Mr Grant told ERA member Dzintra King that on August 22 he took a [...]

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ERA throws out dismissal over pregnancy

Janita WrightA spray tan specialist was fired by her aunt after she got pregnant, with the aunt telling her clients would find it "disgusting and repulsive" to have services performed by a pregnant woman. The Employment Relations Authority has since ruled that Janita Wright was wrong to dismiss her niece Veronica Kloeten from her job at CTS Cosmetologists in Mt Wellington. Kloeten was awarded her lost wages, maternity leave and $3000 in compensation after Wright dismissed her for supposed "serious misconduct" [...]

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Air NZ manager sacked for serious misconduct

An Air New Zealand crew member was sacked after she attempted to board a rival company's plane to have a look inside, then "spoke sarcastically" when she was denied. Helen Watson, a flight services manager with 26 years experience, was dismissed in August last year and has now launched a personal grievance case against her former employer. Air New Zealand says it fired Watson after a disciplinary investigation found her actions amounted to serious misconduct. The airline alleges Watson, when waiting for [...]

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Labour MP has Facebook rant against Mad Butcher

Yes that is right folks I have been silly. Labour Party list MP Darien Fenton's Facebook rant against the Mad Butcher, Peter Leitch is another example of people in management doing dumb things with social media. Among other things, Darien Fenton's said that she chooses "not to buy stuff from those who support Tories." Referring to The Mad Butcher chain that Sir Peter Leitch founded but no longer owns. When others asked Ms Fenton to explain her comment, she called [...]

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Air NZ pilot wins reinstatement over sex case

A pilot with Air New Zealand subsidiary, Air Nelson who was sacked for having sex with a flight attendant and drinking on an overnight stop has won a legal battle to save his job. Air Nelson has exhausted its legal avenues after its decision to dismiss the pilot for "serious misconduct" was overruled. The flight attendant, then 19, said she could not have consented to sex but her complaint to police did not result in a prosecution. The Employment Relations Authority found [...]

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Nurse fails to get reinstatement over vaccination sacking

Sticking to safety procedures is always more important than sticking to a schedule. The Employment Relations Authority has refused to reinstate a Northland nurse sacked for not having an emergency kit on site while giving school students HPV vaccine for cervical cancer prevention. Natalie Lewers was a senior public health nurse employed by the Northland District Health Board to immunise students in the Whangarei and Kaipara area. On 24th August last year she was leading a team vaccinating pupils [...]

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Reading confidential docs on plane raises workplace issues

The current controversy over an insurance company employee who pulled out confidential documents about restructuring and redundancies and started reading them in full view of passengers has raised serious issues about working in transit. A passenger on the flight, Frank van der Zwaag said he was on the Auckland to Wellington flight last Wednesday evening when a woman sitting near him pulled out a stack of papers marked "private and confidential". She was wearing a badge marked "AMP", and her [...]

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Public Service CEO facing serious misconduct investigation

Katrina Bach - it is a long way to fall from the top if the allegations are proven.Katrina Bach the CEO of the Government Department of Building and Housing is being investigated over allegations of verbal abuse and physical assault towards a junior female staff member of her department. The State Services Commission has confirmed that an independent inquiry had begun after "serious allegations" were made about the conduct of Katrina Bach. It is understood Ms Bach was involved in [...]

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Synthetic Cannabis workplace testing available in NZ

Just because it is legal does not mean it is safe in the workplace.Synthetic cannabis or Kronic as it is widely known as is not illegal in New Zealand. Synthetic Cannabis is herbal mixtures sprayed with ‘psychoactive research chemicals’ and sold as ‘fake weed’ or ‘synthetic marijuana’. JWH-018 and JWH-073 are the two most common ‘synthetic cannabinoids’ chemicals found in a variety of herbal smoking blends sold in NZ, including Spice and Kronic. The name ‘Kronic’ is slang for cannabis; [...]

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