Public Transport Employee Dismissed for “Gross Misconduct” Wins Reinstatement

A public transport employee who spat at a member of the public and was dismissed for “gross misconduct” has won her case to be reinstated in employment with the employer.

(Appellant: employee

Respondent: employer)

Member of the public annoying other passengers-appellant intervened-appellant was racially abused and spat at-she spat back at the passenger-all was recorded on CCTV-appellant admitted she was at fault in disciplinary process-employer dismissed her for “gross misconduct”-appellant brought case to Rights Commissioner-Rights Commissioner rejected her case-appealed to Employment Appeals Tribunal-appellant appealed the “too severe” penalty-pointed to her excellent prior record-EAT found that the dismissal was disproportionate-referred to section 6(1) of Unfair Dismissals act, 1977-”substantial” grounds are required to justify dismissal-EAT found that appellant’s conduct contributed to her dismissal-nevertheless appellant to be re-engaged back into the position she previously held and to take effect from 1st Jan. 2012-the period of absence from December 2010 to January 2012 to be counted for continuous service but not remuneration or leave entitlements.


Date of Hearing: 4th April, 2013

For Appellant: Rosemary Mallon B.L. instructed by B.P. O’Reilly Solicitors, Tallaght, Dublin 24

For Respondent: David Farrell, IBEC, Lower Baggott Street

Read full decision here