Friday 28 October 2016

Former worker at top Dublin hotel claims she was sacked after colleague said he'd like to 'slap your a**e'

Published 30/05/2016 | 10:48

The Gresham Hotel
The Gresham Hotel

A former catering worker at the Gresham Hotel claims she was sacked after alleging a supervisor told her he'd like to "slap your a**e" as she walked up a stairway.

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Dubliner Lorraine Dolan claims she was unfairly dismissed by the Dublin landmark hotel for gross misconduct after making three allegations of sexual harassment against her former male supervisor.

Ms Dolan, who worked two shifts a week as a part-time worker, is seeking reinstatement of €8,217 in wages as compensation.


A hearing at the Employment Appeals Tribunal on Friday, was told that Ms Dolan alleged the incidents took place on various dates between April and September, 2014. However, she was not certain of the dates.

On one occasion, she claimed the supervisor remarked "I'd like to slap your a**e" as she was walking up a stairway. On another, the same co-worker allegedly asked her for a kiss after she put on a new uniform.

She also alleged he rubbed his hands on her back near her bra strap. There were no witnesses to any of the alleged incidents, the hearing was told.

But after the hotel's management held investigations, they determined through rosters and other records that the worker at the centre of the allegations was either on annual leave or not rostered to work when the incidents allegedly took place.

During a disciplinary hearing, the hotel's HR manager, Sharon Coleman, dismissed Ms Dolan for gross misconduct for what she claimed were "unfounded and malicious" allegations made against the supervisor. The dismissal was upheld following an appeal.

The hearing was told that Ms Coleman noted during the same hearing that Ms Dolan had made previous claims of harassment against a colleague that were "unfounded".

Christine Rowland, a retired representative for SIPTU, who represented Ms Dolan during the disciplinary process, said Ms Dolan "was adamant" she had been sexually harassed by the supervisor, while he was "equally adamant he hadn't".

The case was adjourned until September 28.

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