Unite Convenor Wins Interim Relief as Judge Rules He Was ‘Likely’ To Have Been Unfairly Sacked

Mark Lyon: Unite Convenor at Ineos Grangemouth

Mark Lyon: Unite Convenor at Ineos Grangemouth

“Ineos needs to start treating its workforce with respect and ensure no trade union officials are victimised” said Unite, as an interim employment tribunal in Scotland ruled in favour of the Grangemouth convenor Mark Lyon.

The decision given on March 7th by Judge Stewart Watt is a blow to the petrochemical company.

The judge said it was ‘likely’ that Mr Lyon will win his case for unfair dismissal when it goes to a full tribunal and ordered Ineos to pay his wages until the full hearing in a number of months.

The judge said: “There was no material evidence that Mr. Lyon had been guilty of any wrong doing”.

The convenor, with 25 years of service to the company, was tried and dismissed in his absence by Ineos managers for not stopping the union commenting on media reports about fears of job losses at the plant.

The tribunal was asked to make an interim finding in Mr Lyon’s favour in order to avoid the financial hardship he will face between now and the final hearing over his unfair dismissal for trade union activity.

Commenting, Unite legal director Howard Beckett said: “We welcome this interim finding which gives Mr Lyon some financial security until the full tribunal where all the evidence will be heard.

“It is a shot in the arm for workers across the country and sends out a clear message that they can be a member of trade union and represent other workers without fear of victimisation.

“Ineos needs to drop its hostility to the workforce and ensure there is no victimisation of workplace representatives before the brain drain of skills at the site becomes a flood that threatens the site’s survival. 

“Ineos should be in no doubt that we will continue to fight for our members at Grangemouth and pay heed to the interim finding by starting to work with the representatives the workforce has chosen.”

Unite’s legal team described the Ineos’ case as “chaotic and contradictory”

You can read all the press cuttings here on the hearing.  

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