€12,000 award for St. Johnston
A Donegal woman who
claimed she was bullied at work and called a "floozy
and a blonde bimbo", has been awarded €12,480 for
Thirty-five years old Joy Porter of Drumenan, St.
Johnston, told an Employment Appeals Tribunal that
she had started work with Atlantic Homecare on May
She said the atmosphere was good at the start.
However, a new female store manager, referred to as
M in tribunal papers, was appointed and started to
"pick on people". Ms. Porter told the tribunal that
M began to call her names in 2002. Words like
"flirt" and "floozy" were used, the tribunal heard.
The complainant was also referred to as a "blonde
bimbo". She was referred to as "Mrs. Bouquet" over
the tannoy system which signified a fussy old woman.
Ms. Porter said she never knew what to expect. One
day she "could be M's best friend" and another day
not. "M just picked on somebody everyday," the
tribunal was told.
Ms. Porter said she was shouted at, sometimes so
loudly she didn't understand what the manageress was
saying. Another employee told the tribunal that M
called her names.
Ms. Porter began to get tension headaches and
anxiety attacks, according to a tribunal report in
the 'Irish Times'. She said by May 2005, she
couldn't take the name-calling and verbal abuse any
longer. She consulted a doctor and went on sick
leave for workplace stress. She later resigned from
Atlantic Homecare. M told the tribunal that the
allegation she picked on people was totally untrue.
When it was put to her that she was overheard
calling the St. Johnston woman "a blonde bimbo", she
replied: "Definitely didn't happen. I never
name-called as a manager for 20 years. It's school
yard stuff". She said nobody ever complained to her
that she shouted or was aggressive in manner or
speech. However, the tribunal found that Ms.
Porter's resignation was a case of constructive
dismissal and not a voluntary decision.