Jamie Carragher | A Guide to Dealing with Non-Workplace Incidents
Date: 13th March 2018 | Categories: Employment law
The issue of Jamie Carragher caught spitting at a 14 year old girl and her father has raised the question about out of work incidents and the extent they can be used in dismissing an individual. Whilst the issues with Jamie Carragher could be straight forward, it does not necessarily mean that all outside of work incidents can result in fair dismissals.
One of the leading cases in this area of Employment Law is The Post Office v Liddiard, where the Court of Appeal held that it was relevant to consider whether the actions of the individual had brought the company into disrepute. It interesting to highlight that that it is not the conduct itself which was under question, it was the damage caused to the reputation of the business.
In the case of Jamie Carragher, it is unclear whether or not he is an employee of Sky, but it is clear that he has brought the company into disrepute in recent days by his behaviour. It is noted that he has apologised, and the family have stated they do not want him to lose his job. Sky have suspended him to allow for a period of contemplation and no doubt to consider what reputational damage there could be to the organisation if it takes the decision to retain his services.
Guidance for Employers
For more mundane, ordinary offences, companies often have to consider issues such as assault charges, speeding offences and driving bans, which can impact on an individual’s ability to complete their duties. It is not always a foregone conclusion that they should be dismissed, and consideration must always be given to proper disciplinary process and procedure, and also the impact the outside event is going to have on the individual’s role. Perhaps surprisingly, even a short spell in prison may not necessarily result in a fair dismissal unless proper consideration has been given to the ability of the company to await for the period of conferment to end.
A driving ban will be more of an issue for a delivery driver than, for example, an accountant, and it may not be publicised nor bring the company into disrepute. The same offence could be committed but a different result would be likely reached through any company procedure. Companies should be wary in jumping to conclusions and making rash decisions without considering all the facts, and mitigating circumstances. Even in such a major debacle such as the one involving Jamie Carragher, it is sensible to take time over reaching any decision, follow due process and consider all factors before taking any action.
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