Can I dismiss an employee for sending threatening text?

By Peter Done on Small Business - Advice and Ideas for UK Small Businesses and SMEs Two members of staff had an argument. One left the premises and I asked her not to return. She sent me a text threatening me with 'people to sort me out'. Can I dismiss her? The post Can I dismiss an employee for sending threatening text? appeared first on Small Business.

Can I dismiss an employee for sending threatening text?

By Peter Done on Small Business - Advice and Ideas for UK Small Businesses and SMEs

This employee has made a threat of physical violence and her conduct in sending a threatening text should be treated as an allegation of gross misconduct. Whilst the sanction for allegations of gross misconduct is summary dismissal it is important not to make any hasty decisions and ensure that you follow your disciplinary procedure. If you simply dismissed without following your disciplinary procedure then the dismissal may be deemed unfair because the employee has not been given the opportunity to respond to the allegations made against her.

>See also: Do I have to pay staff who are self-isolating?

You should consider suspending the employee in these circumstances due to the nature of the alleged conduct. It’s important not to jump to suspension as the only way to remove the employee from the situation – you could achieve the same effect by other means – but a threat of violence in such a threatening text may make actual suspension necessary. In order to support the notion that the behaviour could be gross misconduct, it would be appropriate for some type of measure in this regard to be taken.

>See also: Holiday entitlement for new employees

It is important that the text message is kept because it is evidence. You should also make sure that your approach is consistent with how the organisation has dealt with any similar incidents in the past.

It’s important that you follow up with the employee subsequent to your initial instruction. Telling an employee to leave and not to return could be seen as an instant dismissal, so make sure that you implement a disciplinary procedure so show that you had not, in that instance, dismissed the employee.

Peter Done is managing director and founder of HR consultancy Peninsula

Further reading

How to deal with sexual harassment in your small business

The post Can I dismiss an employee for sending threatening text? appeared first on Small Business.

Source : UK Small Businesses More   

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Do staff have to self-isolate if they’ve been pinged by the NHS Covid app?

By Timothy Adler on Small Business - Advice and Ideas for UK Small Businesses and SMEs The post Do staff have to self-isolate if they’ve been pinged by the NHS Covid app? appeared first on Small Business.

Do staff have to self-isolate if they’ve been pinged by the NHS Covid app?

By Timothy Adler on Small Business - Advice and Ideas for UK Small Businesses and SMEs

If you get pinged, is it a legal requirement (a) for individuals to self-isolate or (b) for employers to enforce it?

Being pinged by the NHS Covid-19 app is entirely different being asked to isolate from NHS test and trace system. If you are asked to self-isolate by NHS test and trace it is a legal requirement. If you are pinged by the NHS Covid-19 app at the moment it is just guidance. You are advised but not legally obliged to self-isolate for 10 days, which means that that if an employer cannot requiree you to necessarily self-isolate, They can ask you to come into work. But then the employer has to bear in mind their obligations and duties under the Health and Safety at Work Act.

Do people on zero-hours contracts have the legal right to go into work?

They do. The government is saying that it’s crucial that you self-isolate, but you are just advised to self-isolate. The individual should tell their employer so that the employer can make an assessment as to whether you’re creating a risk for someone else by going into the workplace.

>See also: 20% of business workers self-isolating due to Covid

What is a reasonable request by an employer for staff to return to work?

It is subjective. It should engender a conversation between the worker and employer. The employer under the Health and Safety obligation should be consulting its workforce more widely to understand what the risks in relation for people coming in. Is it reasonable for people to be coming in if they are working side by side in close contact with other people?

It may be reasonable with the addition of PPE you can retain some form of social distancing and can maintain some form or protection for other members of staff.

You can require the individual to take a lateral flow test in order to minimise the risk of them inadvertently passing on Covid.

Emma Bartlett, partner at employment law specialists CM Murray was speaking to Amol Rajan on the Radio 4 Today programme

Further reading

Do I have to pay staff who are self-isolating?

The post Do staff have to self-isolate if they’ve been pinged by the NHS Covid app? appeared first on Small Business.

Source : UK Small Businesses More   

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