News Courts

Thursday 23 February 2017

Ghost Bus actor awarded €7,500 after he was sacked for 'fluffing his lines'

Gordon Deegan

Mr Mills worked on the Ghost Bus
Mr Mills worked on the Ghost Bus

An actor who was fired after he was judged to have "fluffed his lines" on the Dublin Ghost Bus Tour has won his unfair dismissal case.

In the case before the Labour Court, Declan Mills received two bad reviews of his performance on board the bus in April and May of last year.

Mr Mills's work troubles arose in April 2015 after the commercial manager for Dublin Bus 'Ms B' took the tour and saw him performing.

'Ms B' was dissatisfied with certain aspects of the tour and subsequently conveyed her feelings to the founder of the tour, 'Mr O'D'.

According to evidence given by Dublin Bus at the Labour Court hearing, following the actor's "unsatisfactory" performance, he was advised verbally and in writing of his shortcomings but failed to address these matters.

The bus is billed as Dublin's 'tour of terror', with customers told that they will be transported into a world of ghostly happenings, comedy horror and terrifying histories.

Visitors are promised 'a journey of hair-raising frights' and Mr O'D went on the Ghost Bus tour in May 2015 to evaluate for himself Mr Mills's performance.

According to Dublin Bus, Mr Mills made it clear that he did not care to make the improvements required in his performance.

However, Mr O'D later informed him that he would be asking Ms B to let him go.

On June 2, Mr Mills received his dismissal letter telling him that "your services are no longer required on the Ghost Bus Tour".

Dublin Bus told the hearing that there were substantial grounds justifying the decision to terminate Mr Mills's involvement in the tour.

In his evidence at the Labour Court, Mr Mills contended that Dublin Bus had not followed a fair procedure in dismissing him, and in particular that he was fired without good cause or the facility to appeal against his dismissal.

Ruling that he was unfairly dismissed, the Labour Court found that Dublin Bus followed no clear procedure when it terminated Mr Mills's employment.

It also found that Mr Mills was not afforded adequate opportunity to address the issue which gave rise to the decision of Dublin Bus to dismiss him.

Upholding the decision of the adjudication officer in the case, the Labour Court awarded Mr Mills €7,500.

Irish Independent

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