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Old 01-19-2011, 05:49 PM   #1
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“Indecent, obscene pornography”

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Two former Bank of Ireland employees, sacked for sending “pornographic” images through the company’s e-mail, have taken a case against the bank to the Employment Appeals Tribunal.

Sarah Rooney from Ballybrack and Sarah Murray from Glasthule both 25, were junior staff at the Bank of Ireland subsidiary ICS Building Society when they were fired in 2009.

Barrister for the bank Tom Mallon told the tribunal the two had circulated “extreme and revolting” pornography within and outside the bank and were guilty of “multiple breaches” of policy and gross misconduct.

However barrister Kevin D’Arcy, counsel for the claimants, said the mails were intended as “jocular” and the practice was endemic and known within the branch.

Mr D’Arcy put it to the tribunal that his clients were victims of a “culling of staff” at the bank especially female junior employees.

Giving evidence Larry O’Gara of the bank’s HR department said the case arose after the bank checked the e-mail account of another member of staff as part of an investigation into a separate matter. He said this mail box exposed “highly inappropriate” material being sent and received by members of staff.

Mr O’Gara brought this to the attention of a superior and a wider inquiry was launched. This investigation led to 33 inboxes from 37 separate staff being checked (four of the inboxes were not checked as the staff involved had either resigned, taken a career break or moved on within the organisation).

He said if an employee was found to have received one of the emails but then deleted it no disciplinary action was taken.

As a result the bank took disciplinary action against ten staff members - five of whom were dismissed, including the two claimants, and five were subject to lesser sanctions.

Mr O’Gara said employees were “fully aware” of the email policy in place at the bank and from an HR point of view it is a “no no” to circulate this type of material especially to another institution.

Among the images shown to the tribunal were two with the heading “Men in Training”, one showed a naked child urinating against a wall in a house while in the other a naked toddler pulled his mother’s nipple as she sunbathed topless on the beech.

Mr O’Gara described the images as “indecent, obscene pornography” and “certainly not related to the job” and he had “no doubt” the correct disciplinary action had been arrived at in both the claimants’ cases.

Mr D’Arcy questioned why of the people involved the 10 disciplined were all junior staff and all but one female.


May the non-existent deity deliver us from humourless moral puritans.
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Old 01-19-2011, 05:59 PM   #2
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You've got to be joking.

Anyone dumb enough to use corporate email accounts for goofing off, and not possessing the critical judgment to maybe think twice about sending those deserves to be fucking punished or fired.

I'm about as un-PC as they come and I know it's basic common sense to not use corporate email to forward stupid politically-charged chain letters or junk mail to my entire department. Let alone cartoons.

They sent it over corporate email. It's not a morality issue, it's not a free speech issue, it's an internal corporate policy issue.

This barely warrants a post in a larger thread.
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Old 01-19-2011, 06:13 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Canadiens1131 View Post
You've got to be joking.

Anyone dumb enough to use corporate email accounts for goofing off, and not possessing the critical judgment to maybe think twice about sending those deserves to be fucking punished or fired.

I'm about as un-PC as they come and I know it's basic common sense to not use corporate email to forward stupid politically-charged chain letters or junk mail to my entire department. Let alone cartoons.

They sent it over corporate email. It's not a morality issue, it's not a free speech issue, it's an internal corporate policy issue.

This barely warrants a post in a larger thread.
Jesus H. Christ. That's precisely my point. The defending barrister and HR manager are trying to turn it into a morality issue.
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Old 01-19-2011, 06:18 PM   #4
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Oh, well in that case I totally fucking agree with you

This is why people hate lawyers, by the way.
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Old 01-19-2011, 06:39 PM   #5
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I am not a big fan of texting or emailing.

Anything I send, I do it with the assumption it will live for 1000 years and everyone will have a chance to see it. So most of my emails are short and to the point.

Faciial Bookers are losing their jobs, too.
I don't have a lot of sympathy for these self-inflicted consequences.

Somebody I have worked with for several years just got let go because some women clerical help said he created a hostile environment. I did not see any of it. But, again, it must have been self-inflicted.
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Old 01-19-2011, 09:36 PM   #6
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bait and switch
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