SBC’s defensive tactics pay off

No member of staff has won an employment tribunal case against Scottish Borders Council during the last 30 months.

Of the 11 claims lodged or concluded since September 2012, seven have been dismissed by the tribunal, three have been withdrawn by the employees and one is still awaiting judgement. Details of the cases were given to last week’s full council meeting by Councillor Michael Cook, executive member for human resources and corporate improvement.

According to Mr Cook, the cases dismissed related to Iain Fitzpatrick (who had claimed unfair dismissal), Lesley Riseam (disability discrimination), Patsy Smith (unlawful deduction from her earnings), Jim Gill (unfair dismissal/whistleblowing), Hugh Kinsella (unfair dismissal), Jackie Robertson (unfair dismissal) and David McKenzie (breach of contract/unlawful deduction).

Councillors were informed that claims had been withdrawn by Jackie Wemyss (unfair dismissal), John Heatlie (breach of contract) and Catherine McLeod (unfair dismissal).

The claim awaiting judgement involves Gary Dodds who alleges unfair dismissal and disability discrimination.

Describing this as a “very satisfactory record”, Mr Cook said there was no evidence to suggest the introduction in 2013 of fees, which must be paid by employment tribunal appellants, had impacted on the number of claims against the local authority.