She felt like she was discarded “like an old sock”… that is how utterly devastated and useless she was made feel. Unfortunately, many women simply accept this as a fact of life. It’s the way of the world and who are they to change it? How can they take on the might of a big company?
Going to work isn’t anyone’s favourite activity, but it shouldn’t be something that’s treated as an entitlement, at the gift of someone else and which can be taken away from you at a whim, simply because of your gender.
But that doesn’t need to be the case. We can help give you the support you need to stand up for yourself and other women and girls going through a similar experience like you. Here’s how;
Our Client LD* was working as a customer services rep in Waterford with a well-known call-centre. During her time there she had always been well thought of and worked hard. There was never a shortage of work. She had already been promoted to a more senior position. She was on the fast-track. At least until she raised a complaint with her employer about how she was being treated by a fellow employee, that is.
Her male supervisor had made crude sexual comments to her. Initially it was sexual inuendo that made her feel very uncomfortable, but she felt she could live with. If she spoke up, she’d be seen as a crank. But then it got worse. Much worse. He started openly making lewd comments to her about her figure and what he would like to do to her sexually. About her body and her clothes. He even said things in front of others who just laughed. This was “banter” apparently, a bit of “fun”. But to LD it certainly wasn’t. It made her sick to her stomach.
She did the right thing and complained to management via the HR Dignity at Work procedure and then all of a sudden, she became surplus to requirements. But worse than that, having conducted a cursory ‘lip-service’ investigation, she was threatened by HR that she could be subjected to disciplinary action for making a false complaint, even sacked for it. The Company hadn’t even properly looked into her concerns. They were circling the wagons and she needed to go. LD eventually resigned in frustration and disgust.
Her dad contacted us. LD was devastated and had completely lost her confidence. We took on her case and lodged a claim for her with the WRC. Her former employer vigorously fought their corner. The WRC awarded LD €45,000 but most of all, she felt vindicated, empowered, restored. She had had the courage to stand up to her former employer and to take back the power.