Two employees have been dismissed after allegedly not turning up to work on their first day. The employees stated that during their employment negotiations their employer had agreed that they could start work one week later than planned so that they could attend a funeral.  The employer denied varying the starting date of their employment and dismissed the employees after he was unable to get in touch with them to discuss why they had not shown up for work.

The Employment Relations Authority upheld the employees’ personal grievance claims for unjustified dismissal.

The ERA held that the employer had failed to act as a fair and reasonable employer could in all of the circumstances by dismissing the employees without following any dismissal process.

The ERA held that the employer could not rely on a 90 day trial period clause to protect him as the employees were dismissed before the trial period began.

The ERA ordered the employer to pay the employees $8,750 and $14,280 in lost wages respectively plus $7,000 and $10,000 in compensation for humiliation, loss of dignity and injury to feelings.