Michelin becomes first company in Scotland to be fined by Employment Tribunal
Tyre firm Michelin has been fined £5,000 by an employment tribunal for unfairly sacking a grieving worker, The Herald reports.
It marks the first time a judge in Scotland has exercised powers granted in 2014 to fine bosses for this kind of behaviour.
Stan Reid, 41, was signed off with stress following the death of his best friend’s son, Ralph Smith, as well as those of close friends Julie McCash and David Sorrie.
Mr Reid was fired for gross misconduct, however, after his bosses at the factory in Dundee saw a Facebook post indicating he had been at a gin festival in Glasgow during his sick leave.
An employment tribunal held he had been unfairly dismissed in February, ordering Michelin to pay him £30,000.
Judge Peter Wallington QC has also fined the company the maximum penalty of £5,000 for breaching the factory worker’s rights.
Under the Employment Tribunals Act 1996, the sum is payable to the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
Judge Wallington noted two aggravating factors: that Michelin boss Stuart Duncan decided that Mr Reid should be sacked before his disciplinary hearing and his disregard for a “fit note” from a doctor.
Judge Wallington said: “The respondent is a large organisation with sufficient resources to enable it to comply with the basis canons of employment law.”