Monday, November 14, 2011

Freedom of Information report

This just in :
Documents obtained by Tofinonews confirm a non-wage payment to the former "Special Projects Coordinator" in excess of ten thousand dollars associated with her December 2010 departure. The District characterized her leaving after a few months as a "resignation" but what really happened ? We'll never know as there is a gag order on the departure.
Surely if it was a case of "Constructive Dismissal" it would have been discovered when Council conducted an exit interview ? Tofinonews has learned that no exit interview was held !! Why not ? What is Tofino Council scared of finding out ?? Please ask your incumbent candidates why we are hiring competent staff only to be paying out tens of thousands of dollars when they leave after only a few months ??? ask them why no exit interview ?? Seems there is something not quite right at City Hall...Councilors like to blame the press or public for staff turnover but this is clearly not the case.

Definition of Constructive Dismissal

The phrase "constructive dismissal" describes situations where the employer has not directly fired the employee. Rather the employer has failed to comply with the contract of employment in a major respect, unilaterally changed the terms of employment or expressed a settled intention to do either thus forcing the employee to quit. Constructive dismissal is sometimes called "disguised dismissal" or "quitting with cause" because it often occurs in situations where the employee is offered the alternative of leaving or of submitting to a unilateral and substantial alteration of a fundamental term or condition of his/her employment. Whether or not there has been a constructive dismissal is based on an objective view of the employer's conduct and not merely on the employee's perception of the situation.

It is the employer's failure to meet its contractual obligations that distinguishes a constructive dismissal from an ordinary resignation. The seriousness of the employer's failure as well as the amount of deliberation apparent in its actions are also important factors.

The employer's action must be unilateral, which means that it must have been done without the consent of the employee. If it is not unilateral, the variation is not a constructive dismissal but merely an agreed change to the contract of employment. Generally, if the employee clearly indicates non-acceptance of the new conditions of employment to the employer, there has been a constructive dismissal only if the employee leaves within a reasonable (usually short) period of time. By not resigning, the employee indicates his/her acceptance of the new conditions of employment.

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