NatWest faces £2million reparations for wrongful dismissal of employee with cancer Business

NatWest is facing a £2million damages claim after a senior worker who lost her job while undergoing treatment for bowel cancer won her unfair dismissal case.

A London employment tribunal has dismissed the banking giant’s argument that the £160,000-a-year job of 44-year-old compliance officer Adeline Willis was made redundant, ruling her dismissal was instead “tainted of discrimination”.

A key piece of evidence was a recorded phone call from his manager asking HR for advice on how to end his secondment at the start of a week after he informed the bank of his treatment plan, which involved chemotherapy and radiotherapy. every day for months.

Ms Willis, who worked at the taxpayer-backed bank for six years, was on leave to recover from major surgery when she was told two days after her operation that she would not be kept in a job she had done on secondment for a year.

In her witness statement, she argued that the bank’s chief executive, Alison Rose, was aware of her situation and had promised to help her ‘but when ‘the blow came’ she did nothing. to intervene”.

She said she believed the decision was made to fire her because she was “considered less valuable or, perhaps, a liability due to my cancer diagnosis, or because I feared having to take further periods of leave in the future to undergo further treatment if I become ill”.

The court heard how her team had weekly Monday morning meetings which Ms Willis continued to attend throughout her treatment by calling from home.

When she returned to the office after her chemotherapy, she went to attend the meeting but her manager told her in front of her colleagues that she was not needed and that she was being given back “an hour of her day”.

According to Ms Willis’ case, she felt ‘surprised and humiliated’ and was then left ‘both physically and emotionally in turmoil’ after NatWest fired her without any offer of alternative employment just eight months after her diagnosis of Cancer.

The labor court ruled that she had been wrongfully dismissed.

Will Clayton, a Constantine Law barrister who represented Ms Willis, said: ‘It was a heartbreaking experience for my client who did not deserve the appalling treatment she endured at the hands of one of the world’s most prominent employers. and the best endowed in this country. The next step is to ensure Ms. Willis is fully compensated for her losses and the discrimination she has suffered.”

A NatWest spokesperson said it “recognizes the extremely difficult personal circumstances in this case. The bank is currently reviewing the judgment and considering its position further.”

The bank is facing a compensation claim of around £2million. If the two parties do not agree on damages, a new hearing will take place on April 25 and 26.

NatWest releases its annual results on Friday. In December it became the first major bank to admit money laundering offenses after failing to prevent a gold dealer from transferring large cash deposits that should have been flagged as suspicious.

The bank, formerly known as Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), nearly brought down Britain’s financial system in 2008 when it was bailed out by the government for £45bn.

The lender has tried to shed its toxic legacy from the financial crisis, but it is still more than half owned by the taxpayer.

More about this article: Read More
This notice was published: 2022-02-17 19:04:17

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *