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Notice of appeal filed in GHA bullying case

Unite the Union has confirmed a notice of appeal has been filed in the long running bullying at work case filed by a Gibraltar Health Authority employee against their employer.

Last month the Supreme Court ruled the employment tribunal was wrong to find that Dr Daniel Cassaglia, the then GHA Medical Director, bullied a hospital pathologist in 2017.

On the same day the Union said it would appeal the court's decision.

“The legal advice that the union have received is that the judgment in respect of grounds one and two of the appeal by the former Medical Director to the Supreme Court is eminently appealable,” Stuart Davies, National Officer for Unite Gibraltar said.

“Unite maintains the view that it could not have been the intention of the legislation to restrict claims to the employment tribunal that only relate to persistent bullying regardless of the seriousness of a single act.”

“The legislation does not explicitly exclude single acts and does not provide an exhaustive list of what constitutes bullying in law.”

Mr Davies added the impact of the Supreme Court judgment is wider than this case and affects the broader employment arena in Gibraltar.

“If left unchallenged it provides the green light to bullies and bullying employers,” Mr Davies said.

“The Bullying at Work Act is a progressive piece of legislation, one that has the opportunity to really challenge bullying in the workplace and change behaviours, but the Supreme Court judgment dilutes its effectiveness in requiring bullying behaviour to be persistent and allowing employers to not take responsibility for the actions of their employees.”

“This appeal is important as the outcome will influence the ability of workers to seek successful recourse to the employment tribunal for bullying behaviour that they experience, behaviours that have no place in any workplace, which unions, employers and Government should be striving to stamp out.”

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