Urgent help needed, work read my PIP form and accussing me of lying!

Posted , 4 users are following.

This discussion has been locked due to a period of inactivity. Start a new discussion

Hi,

I urgently need some help. My employer hauled me into the office last Wednesday out of the blue and suspended me. They said they had found some documents on the work computer that were personal to me and they needed to investigate their contents. Months back when applying for PIP I was advised to keep a copy, so after my shift finished one day I scanned it on works scanner and emailed myself the scanned documents. This was done on my own time and we have no policy regarding the use of works equipment. I then forgot about it as it was completely insignificant.

Now, my manager has found these scans, read eveything I put on my PIP form and has now accused me of being dishonest as they don't see that I am like I have stated when I am in work. I have fibromyalgia which fluctuates and is an "invisible" chronic illness. If I showed the true extent of how I feel all day every day I would be complaining 24/7. It's just not practicle, and like most sufferrers I just grin and bear it until I can get home to crash.

My employer is threatening to sack me, accusing me of dishonesty and questioning my trustworthiness. I am absolutely sickened to my stomach at this as I am the most honest, trustworthy person you could ever meet, something which I have always prided myself on, and it has shaken my whole identity.

Any advice would be most gratefully received before my disciplinary meeting that they have called for Tuesday.

Thank you very much,

Ally

1 like, 14 replies

Report

14 Replies

  • Posted

    The first thing you must do is to postpone the disciplinary so you have time to get some support. Go to see your GP and get a sick note. Then You need to get advice either through the CAB or hope fully you are in a union. Then

    ask your employer for policy documents on the use of work equipment, Do they have a staff handbook with rules and regulations in? What are they accusing you of breaching exactly?

    is it not informing them of your health condition?

    is it use of the the works IT equipment?

    Your employer must have some evidenced that you have breached their rules and regulations, have you knowledge of these and have you signed any documentation that says you have knowledge or had sight of these regulations. My advice is to get as much help and advice as you can. Look at each accusation and defend yourself on each point. I would be apologetic to your employer as I was in the same situation however I defended myself with my union rep, however the accusations against me were two people telling complete lies about me. So I was very cocky as I knew it was a he says she says and they had no proof or evidence. But after working for the Council in various roles for 32 years without a blemish, warning to my name I was sacked. I was devestated as I and not done what I was accused. In your case you could be covered by the equality act as you have a disability. But it may be that you haven't informed them that may be angry about, and they could say you could be a healthy safety issue or a risk to yourself or others in the work place.

    just get some extra time and check on the Internet the best support you can get before you go to a disciplinary. Please let me know how you go on. My thoughts are with you at this traumatic time and I know how you are feeling. Take care, Dimples.

    Report
    • Posted

      Hi Dimples, and thank you.

      I am not too worried about the "using work equipment for personal use" as they have no policy for this, none that I have seen or signed. The business is unique so there is no union and it has only been open a year.

      What upsets me the most is that they are accusing me of "potentially" filling in my PIP form dishonestly, questioning my honesty and trustworthiness. For a start they were never meant to read it as the documents are personal to me and not work related, but I suppose as they were on a work computer I cannot really say much about that. What they are saying is that I don't seem as ill and disabled whilst I am in work as my descriptions of daily life in my form. My point is that I do not let it show how much I am affected whilst I am in work as I am afraid of them letting me go on health grounds (they have already cut my hours drastically from 34 to 18 because of my fibromyalgia). They were fully informed of my condition and I have previously asked for changes in shift and duties to help me cope. The form is also filled in as if on my worst day, following advice from several online support groups.

      I really don't know where I stand, and how I can possibly prove how bad an "invisible" illness is.

      Thanks again

      Ally

      Report
  • Posted

    Hi Ally,

    i have had another thought, Acas are very good for advice you can ring them free on 03001231100, or check out their website, www.acas.org.uk

    They have all the up to date guidelines on workplace disciplinary's.

    i feel so angry about your situation, I know how traumatic it is, I didn't sleep or eat, I lost my self confidence and ended up on anti depressants and seeing a councillor for two years. I still haven't got over it after 4 years, I still have nightmares and wouldn't want to wish what I went through on anyone.

    Good luck, Dimples.

    Report
  • Posted

    Hi Ally,

    i can see your dilemma more clearly now, but I would definitely go to your GP and make them wait, I hope they are paying you whilst they have suspended you. Go online to Acas I have wrote the details down but this site is scrutinising this as I put the phone number and website address on. Just google Acas and go to the webpage, they will give you lots advice on disciplinary's in the workplace. So they reduced your hours due to your disability? Did you ask for this? If not then they are liable under the equality act, but if you asked for a reduction then that's fair enough. They can say they did it to make reasonable adjustments to help you.

    You need to take with you information on your disability and how it effects you, are you under a consultant at the hospital? Ring the secretary and ask for information or go to the library for a book. As you say it is a hidden disability and some people have no understanding of the effects of disability on your daily life. Like you said they should have not read anything that is personal to you, maybe you could take out a grievance against your line manager for reading your personal onformation and how on earth did they find it, why were they looking at your computer anyway? There seems to me some personal underlying issues here that this person may have something against you and is just looking for anything to get you in trouble. Some people are just vile. I know myself because of what I went through. Please keep me updated.

    Tale Care, Dimples. 

    Report
  • Posted

    Oh dear. I understand completely because my condition fluctuates as well.

    Don't know much about the legal side of things I'm afraid as I was self employed before I retired.

    Even if you had left your personal stuff on the computer your employer should not have read it if he realised it was personal to you.

    What he should have done I think is bring it to your attention and suggest that you delete it from works computer.

    However, what has been done has been done.

    Hope you manage to sort this one out.

    Sarah

    Report
  • Posted

    Hi Ally,

    Firstly, someone suggested CAB, do not use CAB for anything involving the DWP and PIP / DLA. There is reasons for this, but I will not go in to the details because I would end up with a very long message, but it is to do with UK Government Legislation and Laws.

    I can PM you resources which will help you with PIP and the UK laws as they currently stand.

    If you use CAB, the chances of getting PIP will decrease drastically - and the DWP will use them against you.

    I would suggest you contact your employer regarding Fibromyalgia, because this disease is what is classed as "invisible", but we know it exists. Many doctors do not know how to treat it. I assume you have Consultants at your hospital that can back you up medically? It would be a good idea to take a copy of the Governments Medical details on this, along with a print out of the BMJ (British Medical Journal)'s explanation on this condition. Backing up of the Government's own Medical details and the latest BMJ, should be enough to inform your employer just how bad you suffer in "silence".

    I will get the details together for you, and PM you regarding a few questions, nothing major, it is just things I cannot post on the forums due to the moderation and spam filters. I will not require personal details just a valid email address to send you official documentation.

    I have been asked to write a resource guide for this website, so people can find out things a lot more easier, which should be available in a few days.

    Regards,

    Les.

    Report
    • Posted

      Hi Ally,

      Please hold I am currently cross-referencing details and then I will PM you for your email address.

      As mentioned by the Moderator email addresses are not allowed on the forums, this is why I stated I would send the information by email, but contact you for that via PM. This keeps your email address off the forums, which can lead to youi being spammed.

      Regards,

      Les..

      Report
  • Posted

    Hi Ally,

    In relation to Les comment on the CAB, I did not mean you get any advice from them in regard to PIP, it is in relation to your disciplinary, however my post to you has been approved for Acas. They are the best people to talk to you about your issues at work. They are the best people to discuss your employment issues and the forthcoming disciplinary.

    my heart goes out to you as I said I know, I've been there and done that! I started a new managers job 12 months after I was dismissed and I went off sick in Feb, they gave me an ultimatum in May to either leave or they would have dismissed me as my disability is worsening. Employers are completely in control of you and I decided to admit to myself I was unable to work so I finished with a handshake rather than a black cloud. Like I said to you ensure the employer has an understanding of your disability through literature or from your evidence you can provide from your consultant or GP.

    Good Luck. Dimples

    Report
    • Posted

      Hi Dimples,

      There was a reason for the mention about CAB, but it is Government related and I cannot go in to details on here.

      I sent Ally a whole section that not only lists everything about Fibromyalgia, but also references many top specialists in the field, from England, it was published by the BMJ, and would benefit her in any disciplinary - it details it all and has back ups from an Occupational Physician Independent Consultant with his own statement attached.

      It covers Professors, Directors and Senior Researchers, where they operate in England.

      Categorized under: Pain (Neurology), Fibromyalgia, Muscle disease and Musculoskeletal syndromes.

      If you want, I can send you a copy, it's the latest publication from the BMJ.

      Regards,

      Les.

      Report
    • Posted

      Hi Les,

      thankyou for this, I would like like to see the copy of this document it may help me and others. I can't send you my email address so how will I receive it? My name is lesleyk.sutton and I use iCloud if you can decipher my email address.

      thanks, dimples

      Report
  • Posted

    I am destroyed.

    My moral, my integrity, my confidence, my trust, my faith......everything about who I am has now been destroyed by this evil person.

    Armed with all the advice I had from CAB and ACAS and all the evidence I had gathered, this "manager" refused to postpone. So I attended today, and the malice I faced has left me feeling worthless.

    They are accusing me of committing benefit fraud. They say the difficulties I describe and the person I describe in my PIP claim doesn't "match" with the person they see in work. They say they cannot believe that I cannot stand for a long time to shower when I get up in the morning, when later in the day I can stand for 6 hours on my shift in work. Any explanation of mine about the fluctuations of fibromyalgia were dismissed.

    They say they don't see my daily living difficulties when I am in work. They even insinuated I have made a claim without being "diagnosed", as my doctor gave me a letter backing me but in it he stated my symptoms which he "suspects" is fibromyalgia. But when I have been on my numerous visits to surgery over the last 6 months or more he has told me I have fibromyalgia and is treating me for fibromyalgia.

    They are saying they don't have to prove I am lying...rather I have to prove to them I am telling the truth!!

    Do we not go through enough trying to get people to believe what we are suffering????

    I just don't have the strength or the fight anymore....life is too much of a struggle with this as it is.

    Thank you all for trying to help and advise me after my original post.

    Report
    • Posted

      Dear Ally,

      i am disgusted you ave had to be put through this terrible ordeal! How dare these people who call themselves people treat any individual person the way you have been treated, you would not treat an animal in such a way, never a mind a person who they know. Anyway if they think this let them they are small minded individuals who have no idea about your disability.so have these monsters given you an outcome of what they intend to do with you. What has it got to do with them anyway if you are applying for PIP. Let the health professional who assesses you decide how much benefit you are entitled to not those evil morons. I always believe in others that do bad to others get their comeuppance one day! Stay strong Ally as you know you are better than them and think of your own health as all this stress will make you worse. Have faith in you and people who really care for you, as it doesn't matter what they think, they are just small minded evil individuals that do not know how you suffer. Take care, thinking of you during this traumatic time, Take Care. Dimples.

      Report
    • Posted

      This is dreadful Ally, I assume your company are NOT medical experts?

      The document I sent you was enough on its own, to explain exactly what Fibromyalgia is, and how it affects people in different ways. If they sack you, then you could take your case much further.

      Like I say to everyone "never back down when you're in the right!" - They obviously do not know what or how you cope on a daily basis, otherwise what was on the information on your PIP Award Application form was indeed correct when it comes to a person dealing with Fibromyalgia on a daily basis!

      All doctors have access to the BMA (British Medical Association) and have paperback copies of the (BMJ) British Medical Journal, also available online.

      We even have our own documents on here, which maybe worth pointing out to people, that need to reference about the condition, even doctors use this site for various articles, so it must be kept up to date at all times. The address is:

      https://patient.info/health/fibromyalgia-leaflet

      That tells anyone what your condition entails in detail, which you cannot just brush under the carpet. If your employer contacts the DWP about PIP, the employer will be told it is a 'non-means tested' allowance, which baiscally means it can be paid to a person that is working.

      You, yourself could take this further - I personally, would take it further, but I am not you. But really, you need to know where you stand with this so-called company, with no respect to it's employees. Once, you know this then you can start planning your next move.

      Claiming PIP while working is not "Benefit Fraud" - if your company knew the whole facts then they would have known this. Everything, they have put you through, you could easily throw back in their faces, "they would not have a leg to stand on!"

      It sounds like they are putting across to you that they are professional doctors, they aren't, they are well out of line though, and if taken further you could claim compensation against them, if I am correct.

      I would like to see where they go with this next, contacting the DWP regarding an employee would be in breach of the Data Protection Act.

      Ally, you have enough ammunition to take your case further, whether they are brave enough to do so, is another matter. But from what you put, they would certainly be in the wrong.

      @Dimples, your message is right to the point, staying strong Ally is the hardest part, try not to let this get you down. I know it may sound easy for me to say, but to be honest, we all at some point in our lives have bad times, even I have had plenty - but I held my head high and let your employer struggle, if or when you take further action. Everything I have put in this message is pointers you can use against them.

      It is probably not an easy time right now, even with your illness but pull yourself together at your own pace, go back to ACAS and CAB, and put everything on the table. I wish you all the best for now though.

      Regards,

      Les.

      Report

Join this discussion or start a new one?

New discussion

Report as inappropriate

Thanks for your help!

We want the forums to be a useful resource for our users but it is important to remember that the forums are not moderated or reviewed by doctors and so you should not rely on opinions or advice given by other users in respect of any healthcare matters. Always speak to your doctor before acting and in cases of emergency seek appropriate medical assistance immediately. Use of the forums is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and steps will be taken to remove posts identified as being in breach of those terms.

newnav-down newnav-up