herald

Monday 20 November 2017

I'm being forced out of my job, says blind dad

TRAUMA: 'It's having a devastating effect on my family'

A BLIND computer programmer has claimed Dublin City Council are trying to force him into compulsory redundancy because they say they can't find a role for him.

Pat Murphy (43), from Melrose Park, in Kinsealy, has worked with the council as a senior programmer since 1999.

The dad-of-two, who has been blind since birth, claims that since 2003 he has been assigned projects that have either been stopped before he completes them, or shelved once he finishes the task.

He has told the Herald the council have now informed him they cannot find a role for him and have asked him to consult a solicitor with a view to working out a redundancy package.

"I cannot believe them when they say there is no job for me, my job still exists for a start, there is a consultant doing it now," Pat said.

"I am trying to protect my job, and I feel I'm being victimised," he added. He said he had grown increasingly stressed and demoralised when project after project he was assigned was abandoned or shelved.

"I would be given an assignment, and of course I would work hard on it because that was my job, but I knew they would never see the light of day," Pat explained.







Flipped

"I wrote a new system for payroll and pension, beginning in 2008, but in 2010 when I announced it was ready for testing I was reassigned and the system was never implemented," he added.

Pat said he raised the issue with senior personnel in the council but things did not change.

"In the end I flipped here at home one Saturday morning last March, the stress of it got too much. I was doing something on an old laptop and it wouldn't work, so I snapped," said Pat.

"I was taken to Beaumont because my family thought I was having a heart attack," he added.

Pat said he went to the HR department last April about his situation and he was sent home on special leave with full pay.

"The focus was on finding me a job in Dublin City Council or in any Government department, but in December it was still going on and on," Pat explained.

"They are now suggesting compulsory redundancy and advised me to contact a solicitor," he added.

"This is in breach of the Croke Park agreement which stipulates no compulsory redundancies."

Pat said the situation is having a devastating effect on his children Stephen (12) and Ciara (9), and on his wife Alison.

Dublin City Council said it will not be commenting on an individual staff matter.

"The council's Human Resources Department is in discussion with Mr Murphy on these matters," the council said.

cfeehan@herald.ie

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