ad

Charity faces £21k bill after tribunal

Published date: 25 August 2011 |
Published by: Staff reporter
Read more articles by Staff reporter


 

A CHARITABLE organisation has been ordered to pay more than £21,000 after failing to take proper steps to help reduce the risk of a member of staff suffering from a severe migraine.

In a damning judgment, an employment tribunal has accused trustees of the Association of Voluntary Organisations in Wrexham (AVOW) of failing in their duty to monitor the conduct of their paid officials.

At a six-day hearing at Abergele, the organisation’s chief officer John Gallanders was found to have engineered a hearing to discuss Ms Bove’s disability discrimination claim in a room where there was fluorescent lighting, knowing that it was such lighting which triggered her migraine attacks.

When Ms Bove lodged an official grievance against Mr Gallanders it was not handled properly by the trustees, who merely deferred all decisions to the officers, the tribunal heard.

Ms Bove – known as Genny – from Moss, near Wrexham, began working as a carers fieldworker for AVOW in August 2008.

She had previously worked for AVOW for a short period in 2007, when she had unsuccessfully asked for the office lighting to be changed to help reduce the migraine attacks.

That was when she first clashed with Mr Gallanders and that, the tribunal found, was what prompted him to try to make things difficult for her when she returned.

In his evidence he referred to her poor performance, but failed to give any examples.

At the hearing a letter was produced in which Mr Gallanders had asked for an enhanced CRB check on her, stating: “It might be a long shot, but there may be something that shows up in this which may indicate she is unstable for the job.”

After failing to get a satisfactory response to her grievances about working conditions Ms Bove resigned in March 2009, and subsequently lodged a claim for unfair and constructive dismissal.

The tribunal upheld that claim and her claim of disability discrimination, based on the fact that AVOW had failed to make reasonable adjustments for her disability, but was also guilty of direct discrimination and victimisation.

In addition to a basic award of £626, the Association was ordered to pay her £8,000 plus interest for injury to feelings and compensation of £12,072, making a total of £21,177.

Employment Judge Barrie Clarke said: “We were all saddened by the fact that our award for compensation will badly hit an organisation that works to assist voluntary organisations and carers within the local community.

“Nonetheless, its ability to pay is not a relevant factor. We should not award smaller sums against smaller organisations just because they have shallower pockets.”

Ms Bove, who represented herself throughout the dispute, said yesterday: “I was made very ill by this whole experience and I’m still suffering its effects

“The whole sorry saga was completely unnecessary.

“In my last three places of employment suitable adjustments were made to the office lighting for just a few pounds, it’s really not that difficult to change a light bulb or two.”

You must be a registered user to leave a comment. Register or login here.

  1. Posted by: a cahill at 09:49 on 25 August 2011 Report

    Job politics...personality clash...uncaring attitudes from a purportedly caring organisation set up for the purpose of providing care...."deferred to officers"...must have got that one from Wrexham Council...when staff find they are in the wrong

  2. Posted by: Brightspark at 11:14 on 25 August 2011 Report

    AVOW.. Organisation now responsible for the day to day running of plas madoc communities first programme in Plas Madoc... Good Luck !!

  3. Posted by: ste-roid at 11:19 on 25 August 2011 Report

    She doesnt look like the type to rinse someone for money..............................NOT

  4. Posted by: truth hurts at 12:19 on 25 August 2011 Report

    I remember not long ago the Leader was reporting how Ms Bove was arrested taking items from a skip. Does this woman simply set out to be controversial?

  5. Posted by: volunteer at 12:33 on 25 August 2011 Report

    This is not the first time the Chief Officer as tried to get rid of someone who who challenged him. Time real trustees took over and got rid of this Womaniser & liar who stoops at nothing to grow his Empire. Now he has his hands on the Plas Madoc £millions,The Trustees were warned, now they recoup the prize for doing nothing.In my book writing letters & signing them by the Chair, without telling him says it all,

  6. Posted by: Hen ddraig at 13:36 on 25 August 2011 Report

    @truthhurts. Please explain what is controversial about going to an employment tribunal and winning.

  7. Posted by: kevinweston at 13:47 on 25 August 2011 Report

    Amazed that it took 6 days. No doubt Mr Gallander is considering his position!!

  8. Posted by: InMyOpinion at 14:04 on 25 August 2011 Report

    Mr Gallanders knew he was breaking employment laws... thats why he tried unsuccesfully to find a legal loophole to squirm through ie: an enhanced CRB check on her... what a cad this excuse for a man is.... I'm happy Genny got her result... the charity should now get rid of him asap.

  9. Posted by: joolsoppo at 14:12 on 25 August 2011 Report

    Does this mean that the contracts AVOW hold to provide Carer's services will be looked at. Oh, and how willing are people going to be to use AVOW to represent disability issues? This man has acted unforgiveably and brought the organisation into disrepute - we are told he falsified documents and discriminated and victimised a member of staff - caring organisation? And he is the figurehead of the voluntary sector in Wrexham! Sack him and get some credibility back.

  10. Posted by: yosofunny at 14:58 on 25 August 2011 Report

    This is symptomatic of the challenges that disabled people find themselves up against when trying to secure work. Simple workplace adjustments are often over looked because it is easier to say no. Shame it takes over 2 years to get a result.

  11. Posted by: Brightspark at 15:32 on 25 August 2011 Report

    The residents of Plas Madoc have already suffered enough at the hands of amateurs these past couple of years.. they don't need another bunch coming in AVOW.. sort out your own house first...

  12. Posted by: tommy at 16:44 on 25 August 2011 Report

    Not only should Gallanders be shown the door but the whole process of handing over Plas Madoc Communities First to AVOW should be reviewed.Now that we have discovered the Gallanders is in favour of bending the rules and sheer discrimination then it leaves massive question marks over AVOW's ability to run Plas Madoc CF.We need a review that not only questions what happened locally,but questions the favouritism and rubber stamping that went on in the Welsh Assembly.

  13. Posted by: Whatson at 16:45 on 25 August 2011 Report

    is it just me that wouldnt have the balls to put my face in the paper after taking 21K from a charitable organisation? it wasnt coming from Mr Gallanders' pockets .... but from a place that could have put it to better use in the community.

  14. Posted by: tommy at 16:47 on 25 August 2011 Report

    ...it is also a measure of the sheer lack of intelligence Gallanders exhibited by thinking he could take jenny on and win :) :) :)

  15. Posted by: Brightspark at 16:50 on 25 August 2011 Report

    Yes Whatson.. what do you suggest... more equine projects.. really supporting our communities they are.... ! lets hope this at least highlights the workings of AVOW... and about time too..

  16. Posted by: Whatson at 16:59 on 25 August 2011 Report

    possibley not pony rides but maybe more reablement projects for disabled people who need resources or equiptment ..... dunno though you the king of sarcasm should probably decide what these people 'need' eh?

  17. Posted by: MrWrexham at 17:06 on 25 August 2011 Report

    Does anyone know the other half of the story? Why are we believing what we are reading in the paper?

  18. Posted by: MrWrexham at 17:10 on 25 August 2011 Report

    Does anyone know the other half of the story? Why are we believing what we are reading in the paper?

  19. Posted by: volunteer at 17:52 on 25 August 2011 Report

    There is no other half of the story,it is the report of the Employment Tribunal, some of Gallanders cronies don't like it.,tough But the chickens have come home to roost at AVOW,it is heartening news to the others Gallanders discriminated against. I know of two other staff he got rid of, as they challenged his empire. To let this man loose with £1M of PMCF monies is asking for trouble.

  20. Posted by: kevinweston at 17:54 on 25 August 2011 Report

    the other half of this story is an apology from AVOW and a resignation...........

  21. Posted by: mountain man at 19:57 on 25 August 2011 Report

    The proverbial has hit the fan,it is just another quango shut it down and start again with credible people at the helm.

  22. Posted by: LiveinHope at 21:37 on 25 August 2011 Report

    If she'd previously worked for AVOW she'd have known about the lighting so why bother applying for another post? That £20,000 could have gone to supporting carers instead it goes to settle an unfair dismissal claim, she resigned for goodness sake. Yes, it could have been handled better but shame on this lady really.

  23. Posted by: volunteer at 05:46 on 26 August 2011 Report

    She did not apply for another post, Avow in its ever Empire building,outbid another Charity it was supposed to assist for the contract,,Ms Bove was already working for that Charity that AVOW took over.Same procedure at PMCF AVOW took over its staff & the £money.Ms Bove was the innocent party.

  24. Posted by: Whatson at 12:24 on 26 August 2011 Report

    she might be blame free but she should not be guilt free

  25. Posted by: Rhydian at 12:37 on 26 August 2011 Report

    I have recently worked with AVOW, and they are great, you couldn’t meet and better and more devoted group of people. I am disappointed as this article has no mention of what AVOW achieve, which is such a shame. They work to increase the sense of community cohesion in Wrexham and surrounding villages, help people gain experience through volunteering, along with hundreds of smaller but none the less important jobs.

  26. Posted by: Rhydian at 12:53 on 26 August 2011 Report

    I have recently worked with AVOW, and they are great, you couldn’t meet and better and more devoted group of people. I am disappointed as this article has no mention of what AVOW achieve, which is such a shame. They work to increase the sense of community cohesion in Wrexham and surrounding villages, help people gain experience through volunteering, along with hundreds of smaller but none the less important jobs.

  27. Posted by: Wrecsam11 at 13:04 on 26 August 2011 Report

    It’s funny Rhydian, heard the same argument made when things went wrong at Plas Madog CF. This is not about the achievements of AVOW or a judgment on the work that the staff do. The issue is about governance, appropriate management, leadership and accountability. It appears to me that these are four areas where the trustees, and senior management team of AVOW appear to have failed to make the appropriate grade.

  28. Posted by: boybach at 15:02 on 26 August 2011 Report

    Well Genny, £21K for ONE DAYS work!! You knew full well when taking the position what it entailed given you had previously worked for the organisation. I just wonder WHERE you managed to find this letter. As for the comments on Plas Madoc below, maybe you should take these concerns up with the Welsh Governent given it was them that approached AVOW.

  29. Posted by: boybach at 15:02 on 26 August 2011 Report

    Well Genny, £21K for ONE DAYS work!! You knew full well when taking the position what it entailed given you had previously worked for the organisation. I just wonder WHERE you managed to find this letter. As for the comments on Plas Madoc below, maybe you should take these concerns up with the Welsh Governent given it was them that approached AVOW.

  30. Posted by: boybach at 15:07 on 26 August 2011 Report

    Well Genny, £21K for ONE DAYS work!! You knew full well when taking the position what it entailed given you had previously worked for the organisation. I just wonder WHERE you managed to find this letter. As for the comments on Plas Madoc below, maybe you should take these concerns up with the Welsh Governent given it was them that approached AVOW.

  31. Posted by: boybach at 15:07 on 26 August 2011 Report

    Well Genny, £21K for ONE DAYS work!! You knew full well when taking the position what it entailed given you had previously worked for the organisation. I just wonder WHERE you managed to find this letter. As for the comments on Plas Madoc below, maybe you should take these concerns up with the Welsh Governent given it was them that approached AVOW.

  32. Posted by: boybach at 15:09 on 26 August 2011 Report

    Well Genny, £21K for ONE DAYS work!! You knew full well when taking the position what it entailed given you had previously worked for the organisation. I just wonder WHERE you managed to find this letter. As for the comments on Plas Madoc below, maybe you should take these concerns up with the Welsh Governent given it was them that approached AVOW.

  33. Posted by: boybach at 15:10 on 26 August 2011 Report

    Well Genny, £21K for ONE DAYS work!! You knew full well when taking the position what it entailed given you had previously worked for the organisation. I just wonder WHERE you managed to find this letter. As for the comments on Plas Madoc below, maybe you should take these concerns up with the Welsh Governent given it was them that approached AVOW.

  34. Posted by: boybach at 15:12 on 26 August 2011 Report

    Apologies for the repeat of comments above, my screen locked and I clicked refresh. Wasnt an intention to spam.

  35. Posted by: plastic man at 20:02 on 26 August 2011 Report

    It's not the charities fault, but that of Mr. Gallanders, the trustees of AWOV should conduct an "enhanced check" of his compentence and act accordingly....shyster!!! get a real job Mr Gallanders and see how you fair in the real world

  36. Posted by: boybach at 20:30 on 26 August 2011 Report

    Out of curiosity, do any of the posters actually know Mr Gallanders, or are they just jumping on the banddwagon with what has been reported in the press. Lets face it, Ms Bovey KNEW she didnt get on well with Mr G, KNEW the layout of AVOW and KNEW she would be unsuitable for the job. All she saw was an opportunity to make some easy money

  37. Posted by: PeterJ at 22:07 on 26 August 2011 Report

    All this case is going to do is get more work for the No Win No Fee cowboys. I feel sorry for those people how earn an hinest living without getting money from Claims Direct. All businesses need to be prepared for these types of claims.

  38. Posted by: PeterJ at 22:44 on 26 August 2011 Report

    All this case is going to do is get more work for the No Win No Fee cowboys. I feel sorry for those people how earn an hinest living without getting money from Claims Direct. All businesses need to be prepared for these types of claims.

  39. Posted by: Wrecsam11 at 00:34 on 27 August 2011 Report

    @PeterJ, I agree this story is already on many of the no win no fee websites. @boybach she didn’t go back to work for AVOW, her job was transferred to AVOW, when they took on the project that she worked on. So I don think she had much of an option. It’s a shame, that the organisation charged with leading the voluntary and community sector in Wrexham, has brought it attention again for all the wrong reasons.

  40. Posted by: boybach at 11:00 on 27 August 2011 Report

    I dont understand how you can say that tommy. Exactly HOW can AVOW force people to work for charities in return for their benefits?? They are NOT a division of the job centre. The only facism in relation to AVOW exists on these comments, from people who have never been there, never worked there, or never had any dealings with them.

  41. Posted by: boybach at 11:02 on 27 August 2011 Report

    I dont understand how you can say that tommy. Exactly HOW can AVOW force people to work for charities in return for their benefits?? They are NOT a division of the job centre. The only facism in relation to AVOW exists on these comments, from people who have never been there, never worked there, or never had any dealings with them.

  42. Posted by: tommy at 15:05 on 27 August 2011 Report

    Hi Boybach,the fact that my last contribution has been censored suggests it must have struck a chord with someone in avow.I seriously suggest you ask to see the articles and memorandum of AVOW then perhaps you will see what I mean.By the way if they refuse to show you then insist it is your right(which it is)

  43. Posted by: JaneJ at 19:00 on 27 August 2011 Report

    Tommy you really are scraping the bottom of the barrel.. are you saying that AVOW is now controlling the press by editing this Board-- I am sure they do not have the power you are saying. Why don't you just report so the rest of us know what you and Boybach are on about-- it certainly does not seem to be anything to do with this news story.

  44. Posted by: JaneJ at 19:19 on 27 August 2011 Report

    Tommy you really are scraping the bottom of the barrel.. are you saying that AVOW is now controlling the press by editing this Board-- I am sure they do not have the power you are saying. Why don't you just report so the rest of us know what you and Boybach are on about-- it certainly does not seem to be anything to do with this news story.

  45. Posted by: JaneJ at 20:02 on 27 August 2011 Report

    Tommy you really are scraping the bottom of the barrel.. are you saying that AVOW is now controlling the press by editing this Board-- I am sure they do not have the power you are saying. Why don't you just report so the rest of us know what you and Boybach are on about-- it certainly does not seem to be anything to do with this news story.

  46. Posted by: JaneJ at 22:24 on 27 August 2011 Report

    Tommy you really are scraping the bottom of the barrel.. are you saying that AVOW is now controlling the press by editing this Board-- I am sure they do not have the power you are saying. Why don't you just report so the rest of us know what you and Boybach are on about-- it certainly does not seem to be anything to do with this news story.

  47. Posted by: JaneJ at 22:50 on 27 August 2011 Report

    Tommy you really are scraping the bottom of the barrel.. are you saying that AVOW is now controlling the press by editing this Board-- I am sure they do not have the power you are saying. Why don't you just report so the rest of us know what you and Boybach are on about-- it certainly does not seem to be anything to do with this news story.

  48. Posted by: JaneJ at 23:44 on 27 August 2011 Report

    Tommy you really are scraping the bottom of the barrel.. are you saying that AVOW is now controlling the press by editing this Board-- I am sure they do not have the power you are saying. Why don't you just report so the rest of us know what you and Boybach are on about-- it certainly does not seem to be anything to do with this news story.

  49. Posted by: volunteer at 05:54 on 01 September 2011 Report

    Source: Correspondence from Charity Commission (Wales Office) “The Tribunal’s criticisms about the role of trustees are of particular concern because AVOW receives funding in order to establish and maintain good practice for the local voluntary sector. It is essential therefore that the charity demonstrates that it operates as a role model of good governance. This judgement is likely to have a negative impact on the charity’s reputation and we consider that it requires urgent action.”

Featured Businesses

    View all adverts