Dismissed nursing home pair get €40,000
A nursing home has been ordered to pay two women a total of more than €40,000 after dismissing them from their jobs when it was discovered they had convictions.
Cloverland Healthcare Limited told Gabrielle Stynes and Tracey Keogh that the company had no choice but to terminate their employment.
The firm, based at Shinrone, Co Offaly, operates nursing homes there and in Athy.
Ms Stynes and Ms Keogh both took their case, alleging unfair dismissal, to the Employment Appeals Tribunal.
Ms Stynes had been employed as a laundry operative in 2007.
When HIQA changed the regulations for nursing homes to require garda vetting of employees, it emerged Ms Stynes had two convictions from 1993 and 1998 which pre-dated her employment with Cloverland.
She was asked to attend a meeting on September 14, 2012, when she was told the company was letting her go.
Ms Keogh had been employed as a care assistant by the nursing home in 2004.
When the requirement for garda vetting was introduced it was revealed that she had a number of convictions which pre-dated her employment.
She was on maternity leave when management contacted her, and at a meeting in October 2012 she was told the company had no choice but to terminate her employment.
In Ms Stynes' case, the tribunal found Cloverland had erred in not carrying out a risk assessment to determine if she could continue in employment in light of both the information raised by garda vetting and of her service with the company.
Her role in the laundry did not require contact with patients.
The tribunal found her summary dismissal was unfair and awarded her €21,120.
In Ms Keogh's case, the tribunal also found the company erred in not carrying out a risk assessment to determine whether she could continue in employment.
It ruled that her summary dismissal was unfair and awarded her €20,064.