An employee has been dismissed following a dispute where it was alleged that he pushed one of his managers. The police were called to the workplace but had no recollection of ever being told someone had been pushed.

The Employment Relations Authority upheld the employee’s personal grievance claim for unjustified dismissal.

The ERA held that the employer failed to act as a fair and reasonable employer could in all of the circumstances by following an unfair dismissal process.

The ERA found that the employer relied almost entirely on the manager’s account of events and did not question the police officer present at the time during the disciplinary investigation.

The ERA found that the employer could not conclude that the employee had pushed his manager, and noted that the employee was not given a chance to talk directly to the employer about the incident.

The ERA ordered the employer to pay the employee $8,000 in compensation, after taking into account the employee’s contributory behaviour.

The employer was also penalised an additional $6,000 for failing to keep adequate wage and time records, of which $1,000 was awarded to the employee.