Employment tribunal judgement finds ‘no basis for charge of gross misconduct’ against FDA members

11 February 2015

(For immediate release)

 

An employment tribunal judgement has found that two FDA members were unfairly dismissed from their jobs at the National Library of Wales.

Arwel Jones and Elwyn Williams were initially suspended and then demoted, following concerns over a procurement exercise where there were some technical breaches. The Library had already accepted that there was no question of fraud.

Judge J Thomas found that there was "no basis for a charge of gross misconduct", and that "the failure had not been one of misconduct but capability", brought about by the Library's failure to provide training. In the investigation of the case and their evidence to the tribunal the judge found respondents from the National Library of Wales gave "misleading answers" and remained "opaque and disengaged".

The judge concluded that "the disciplinary process has been conducted with a lack of commitment on the part of the respondent and an element of antagonism and defensiveness."

FDA National Officer for Wales, Paul Neilson, said: "This case should never have been brought to tribunal. Not only has it taken up a great deal of many people's time, It has already cost the Library a considerable sum of public money, believed to be around £70,000.

"We tried to agree a settlement to this case from the very beginning - up to the first day of the tribunal - but without success. The judge has completely vindicated us in finding that demotion was a breach of contract and a breach of trust and confidence.

"The disciplinary panel of trustees did not seek explanations or give proper consideration to the issue and points raised, with the chair of that panel being described as 'wholly unconvincing' and the Librarian "disingenuous". The Judge also questioned the auditors' methodology and judgment. This does seem to call into question the decision making of senior management and the governance of the Library."

A remedies hearing was set for 9 and 10 February. This has now been postponed in order for the parties to try and agree a settlement as suggested by the Judge.

To read the full judgement click here.

Notes for editors

1. The FDA is the trade union for the UK's senior public servants and professionals. FDA membership includes more than 19,000 senior civil servants, Government policy advisors, prosecutors, diplomats, tax professionals, economists, solicitors and other professionals working across Government and the NHS.

2. The FDA (formerly the First Division Association) should be referred to simply as "The FDA" and can be described as "the senior public servants' union".

3. The FDA can be found on Twitter @FDA_union and at www.fda.org.uk.

4. The FDA's alternative White Paper - 'Delivering for the Nation: Securing a World-Class Civil Service - outlining our analysis of the challenges facing the civil service and our recommendations for change, can be read here.

5. For further information contact:

  • Paul Neilson, FDA National Officer, tel: 020 7401 5555 or 07973 731442.
  • Katie Lazell, Communications Officer, tel: 020 7401 5555 or 07939 257985.

11 Chwefror 2015

(I'w ryddhau ar unwaith)

Dyfarniad tribiwnlys cyflogaeth yn canfod 'nad oes unrhyw sail i gyhuddiad o gamymddwyn difrifol' yn erbyn aelodau o'r FDA

Mae dyfarniad tribiwnlys cyflogaeth wedi canfod bod dau aelod o'r FDA wedi eu diswyddo'n annheg o'u swyddi yn Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru.

Yn wreiddiol fe ataliwyd Arwel Jones ac Elwyn Williams o'u swyddi ac yna'u diraddio, yn dilyn pryderon ynglŷn ag ymarferiad caffael, pryd y gwnaed rhai camgymeriadau technegol. Roedd y Llyfrgell eisoes wedi cydnabod nad oedd unrhyw amheuaeth o dwyll.

Canfyddiad y Barnwr J. Thomas oedd na allai weld 'unrhyw sail i'r cyhuddiad o gamymddygiad difrifol' a bod y methiant 'yn un o hyfedredd yn hytrach nac ymddygiad' a bod hynny wedi ei achosi gan fethiant y Llyfrgell i gynnig hyfforddiant. Yn eu harchwiliad o'r achos ac yn eu tystiolaeth i'r tribiwnlys gwelodd y barnwr bod cynrychiolwyr Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru wedi cynnig 'atebion camarweiniol' a'u bod wedi bod yn 'anhryloyw ac wedi ymddieithrio o'r broses'.

Daeth y barnwr i'r casgliad bod 'y broses ddisgyblu a gynhaliwyd ganddynt wedi ei chynnal gyda diffyg ymroddiad ar ran [y Llyfrgell] ac elfen o fod yn elyniaethus ac amddiffynnol'.

Dywedodd Paul Neilson, Swyddog Cymru yr FDA, 'ni ddylai'r achos hwn fod wedi cyrraedd y tribiwnlys. Nid yn unig mae wedi cymryd llawer iawn o amser nifer o bobl, mae eisoes wedi costio swm sylweddol o arian cyhoeddus i'r trethdalwr. Credir ei fod tua £70,000.

'Fe geision ni gytuno ar setliad i'r achos o'r dechrau'n deg - hyd at ddiwrnod cyntaf y tribiwnlys - ond heb unrhyw lwyddiant. Mae'r barnwr wedi'n cyfiawnhau ni'n llwyr drwy ganfod bod y diraddiad yn dor-cytundeb ac yn torri ymddiriedaeth a hyder.

'Wnaeth y panel o Ymddiriedolwyr y Llyfrgell ddim ceisio unrhyw eglurhad na rhoi ystyriaeth briodol i'r achos na'r pwyntiau a godwyd. Dywedwyd bod cadeirydd y panel hwnnw yn 'gyfan gwbl anargyhoeddiadol' a'r Llyfrgellydd yn 'annidwyll'. Bwrodd y barnwr amheuaeth ar farn a methodoleg yr archwilwyr yn ogystal. Ymddengys bod hyn yn codi cwestiynau am y modd mae uwch reolwyr yn gwneud penderfyniadau ac am lywodraethiant y Llyfrgell.'

Mae achos wedi ei drefnu ar gyfer 9 a 10 Chwefror i gytuno ar yr iawndal, ond mae'r barnwr wedi dweud ei fod yn gobeithio gweld datrusiad yn cael ei gytuno cyn hynny.

To read the full judgement click here.

Nodiadau

1. Yr FDA yw'r undeb llafur ar gyfer gweision suful hŷn a gweithwyr proffesiynol y DU. Mae aelodaeth yr FDA yn cynnwys mwy nag 19,000 o weision suful hŷn, tngybnghorwyr polisi'r Llywodraeth, erlynwyr, diplomyddion, swyddogion treth, economegwyr, cyfreithwyr a phobl broffesiynol eraill sy'n gweithio ar draws y Llywodraeth a'r Gwasanaeth Iechyd.

2. Dylid cyfeirio ar yr FDA (the First Division Association cyn hynny) fel "Yr FDA" a gellir ei ddisgrifio fel 'yr undeb ar gyfer y gweision suful hŷn'.

3. Gellir dilyn yr FDA ar Twitter @FDA_union ac ar www.fda.org.uk.

4. Am ragor o fanylion cysyllter â:

  • Paul Neilson, FDA National Officer, tel: 020 7401 5555 or 07973 731442.
  • Katie Lazell, Communications Officer, tel: 020 7401 5555 or 07939 257985.
  •