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Being dismissed for long term sickness

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by swotter, May 21, 2011.

  1. swotter

    swotter New commenter

    I am having a formal review with the governors of my school next week. They seem to want to dismiss me. I trying to come back to work after going off sick end of Oct 10 due to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I have gone through hell and back. My son was shot in Afghanistan and I have had amazing help from the NHS (although I had to wait three and half months for the counselling) The OH has recommended a phased return, but my school has still referred me for dismissal.
    My union says their decision is perverse.
    Has anyone been through these procedures?
    What should I say, do, wear, take with me...(sorry I am being a bit girly).

  2. How horrid swotter, sending you my love and hugs.
    I don't have any advice but I am not sure your school can do that. surely that would be unfair dismissal?
  3. Not only is the decision perverse, it also sounds like your scholl hasn't heard of the Equality 2010 act! My impression of itis that your PTSD would be classed as an illness/disability and you are entitled to reasonable adjustments and to attend your appointments.If the school has indeed referred you for dismissaldespite the OH's recommendation then it is playing a dangerous game! As well as the union, I suggest that you also speak to OH and your GP if you haven't already done so.
    Unfortunately, I can't advise you on what to take with you as I haven't been through this before but I'm sure the union would help with this. If not, go further up the chain.
    Sorry to hear about your circumstances btw, loads of luck and hope you feel better soon!
  4. swotter

    swotter New commenter

    Thank you randomgirl.
    I know that you have problems of your own- good luck for the future. From my experience friends are very important, continue to see them as they will help you. I can't understand why I am being put through this process. My doctor, counsellor, union et al are all supporting me to go back to school.
  5. Thank you Swotter, I am doing ok.
    I am glad that you have the support of your union, GP and OH.
    Hopefully your school will see they are being idiots, and sort themselves out.
  6. swotter

    swotter New commenter

    Thank you for your post. I am at a loss to know why they think they can dismiss me.
    My union has been brilliant and the OH has been very supportive. I have got the phased return certificate, report from my counsellor my husband to support me. How can I fail??
    I will let you know how I get on.

  7. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    You take with you your OH recommendation for a phased return, any relevant paperwork and a regional rep.
    Ring the Human Rights and Equality Commission for advice. If they school ignore OHs advice then you could have grounds to go to an employment tribunal. I'd also seek advice from an employment solicitor. You can often see one for half an hour free.
  8. swotter

    swotter New commenter

    Thanks Torey,
    The trouble with these procedures, if you want to come back to the school you don't want to be too confrontational. Balanced with this you need to put the case so that you can come back.
    I am so pleased to be back to my normal self I can't understand why anyone would not love to have me back. The school is looking at my long term prognosis..... I have a OH recommendation and lots of paperwork.
    I am so happy and glad to be normal again- before I was a crying wreck, avoiding seeing anyone and very unhappy.

  9. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    You don't need to be confrontational. You need to go into the meeting with the knowledge of your rights. I hope you're not intending to go without someone from the union?
  10. swotter

    swotter New commenter

    My husband is going to support me as I can't really see there will be a problem. If they choose to dismiss me then I will have to get the union more involved. Hopefully it won't come to that.

  11. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    Your head wouldn't have taken this to the governing body unless he had the intention to dismiss. You have only been off 6 months and they are not looking at supporting you in a phased return. To have got to this stage you must of been through other absence proceedings and been set targets. Something is seriously wrong.
    Have you had a copy of the paperwork that will be presented? Have you a copy of the procedure? If you're not taking your union with you, then at the very least ask them what you need to say and do.
  12. swotter

    swotter New commenter

    I had 5 days off in the previous year and absence has never been an issue. I have a copy of the paperwork. Basically they do not think I am capable of continuing my job, I have never had any problems with stress, I love my job- what's the problem?

  13. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    The problem is:
    <ol>[*]They are being heavy handed in a situation that does not appear to warrant it. [*]They have ignored the advice of OH. [*]You do not appear to have been taken through the absence proceedings in the correct manner i.e. warning, stage 1, stage 2 and then governors. [*]You do not feel comfortable taking your union rep to a meeting that could cost you your job. </ol>I do hope it works out for you though.
  14. I wouldn't recommend taking your husband with you swotter no matter how wonderful he is - he is too involved with you to be impartial. You really need someone who is not emotionally involved with you to support you. Your union rep is the best person. They are more au fait with what the school can and cannot do.
    Good luck.
  15. Tigger1962

    Tigger1962 New commenter

    Agreed - take the union
  16. I can only echo what other posters have said - please take a union rep with you!
    I can't believe that you are having to go through this, I've known people to be off for almost a year with stress related illness - which I would think is less favourable than PTSD and have been phased back without a problem. This is incredible unfair!
    Good luck with it all, I'll be thinkg of you.
  17. Oh, forgot to add - what to wear? Whatever makes you feel most in charge of yourself. For some people nothing less than a suit will suffice, for one of my friends, just knowing she has matching underwear on makes her feel charged and in charge! Whatever works for you!
  18. swotter

    swotter New commenter

    Thank you to everyone, but it is too late to take the Union Rep at this stage.
    I will let you know what happens.
  19. Surely you are entitled to take a union rep, even if you arrange it at a later stage? Really, I strongly suggest you phone your union's head office and get someone to go with you. You should be able to defer any meetings until someone can be appointed.

    It sounds as if they are going to put you through capability procedures rather than a straight dismissal. Or perhaps if they can't lawfully get this dismissal, they will then try capability procedures as a second effort.

    When you're suffering with something like that, this just adds to the stress and impairs your recovery. I really hope you feel better.
  20. carrotsandcream

    carrotsandcream New commenter

    I have now been back to work for a year after a sudden longterm absence (4months) due to a sudden serious blood disorder..
    i kept the school informed via medical certificates i also had several trigger level meetings. I think that it is vital for you to take a union rep into the meeting with you as. I was presented with a long list of absences which proved to be incorrect as these were hosoptal appointments from the timme I started the job and should not have peen presented as these do not count, but I wouldnt have known that.
    Your Union rep will be aboe to represent you and make sure that the school behaves in the correct way.
    Send an email to your union rep to see if you can cancel the meeting for another day when they will be able to repsent you.
    I didnt have to seay to much as my union rep did all the work. I was phased back into work by teaching less classes. This worked well for me.
    Another friend was phased back to work after a berivement by just going to school to teach certain lessons.
    P.S I hope that it goes well, but take a union rep with you .you could alst take your husband,with you. Let us know how it goes


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