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Your Questions – March 2011

Secret Surveillence:

We are a packaging house for certain large companies and we suspect that one of our production operatives is stealing stock items from the stores area during the packaging process. We became aware of the problem of missing stock when random customers contacted us to say their orders were incomplete. Our quality system has been checked and we can’t find eveidence there of any miss placed orders. Our production manager now wants to install some hidden cameras in the production area.

Is it legal to do this?

Selection for redundancy:

We are planning redundancies across a number of departments at the moment. Each department manager has been asked to identify employees who will be made redundant. The marketing manager has come back with 2 employees one of which is currently on maternity leave and isn’t due back to work until after the redundancies.

Can we legally make someone on maternity leave redundant?

Paid time off:

One of our employees phoned to say they were taking a force majeur day because they were moving house and it was necessary for them to be there when the landlord came to take the meter readings etc.

Does this type of request fall under force majeure?

Claim of being bullied:

The manager of our finance department received a letter from a member of staff who has been out sick for the last week stating that their illness is directly related to them being bullied in the work place and until it is addressed they are not coming back to work.

How should we handle this?