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Bin company boss laughed at complaint, tribunal told

A FORMER credit control manager at a bin collection company has told how her boss laughed at her when she made a complaint to him about another staff member.

Dee O'Malley also told an Employment Appeals Tribunal hearing that Greyhound Recycling's internal communication was so poor that angry council employees would regularly ask her why she had been "left out of the loop". The company manages waste collection for local authorities in the Dublin area.

Ms O'Malley, from Ranelagh, Dublin 6, has claimed that dysfunction within Greyhound prevented her from doing her job properly and forced her to resign.

Yesterday, a visibly upset Ms O'Malley told a constructive dismissal hearing that prior to her resignation she was suffering from an unspecified illness which was causing her a lot of discomfort at work but "I was never asked, 'why were you in pain, what was wrong?'".

She also said that despite a series of requests, her direct manager, Gareth Holland, failed to address her personal and professional concerns.

Ms O'Malley worked in Greyhound's finance department for over a year-and-a-half until her resignation in July 2010.

Among her responsibilities was the collection of money from Dublin's local authorities for waste collection. Despite being the "point of contact", she said that on a number of occasions she was excluded from meetings.

"I would phone to get paid and they (the councils) were irate, they couldn't understand why I would phone up looking to get paid when their issues hadn't been resolved, and they'd say, 'don't you even know about this?'" Ms O'Malley said.

On May 20, 2010, she sought certain details relating to an occasional client of Greyhound's from the company's operational manager, Cormac Shields.

"He emailed back and said, 'why don't you treat them with the courtesy they deserve?'."

Stunned

Ms O'Malley was stunned by Mr Shields' response but when she raised it with Mr Holland, "he started laughing and sat back in his chair with his hands over his head".

Mr Holland said yesterday that he could not recollect if he had done this.

In July 2010, Ms O'Malley asked Mr Holland to modify her working hours until after an operation she required for her illness, but Mr Holland told her this was not possible.

On July 20, 2010 Ms Malley sent him an email stating the difficult work conditions she had to endure left her with no choice but to resign. Mr Holland said Ms O'Malley failed to respond to a series of emails and letters he sent asking her to reconsider.

"I was very fond of Dee, we had a lot in common, our relationship was very positive and I had a lot of respect for her," Mr Holland said.

The case concluded yesterday and the four-person tribunal will issue their decision in the coming weeks.

Irish Independent