Labour Relations update

Termination of Employment on Disciplinary grounds

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Termination of Employment on Disciplinary grounds
March 2020 | Volume 07

Question: Should an employer conduct a disciplinary hearing for any termination?
Answer: Disciplinary procedures can only be taken against an employee on reasons of gross misconduct.

Question: What are other sanctions can an employer issue to an employee other than termination?
Answer: Supervisors can issue verbal warnings for minor offenses and written warnings if the behavior has not improved from verbal warnings.

Question: What rights are afforded by the law to an employee on suspension pending disciplinary procedures?
Answer: Suspension must be on full pay. This right is afforded to an employee in an event the employer unreasonably delays disciplinary procedures, the employer should bear the consequences of such delay by paying full remuneration for the entire period that the employee is on suspension. (Rule 27 of the Code of Good Practice Rules, 2007).

Question: Which acts may justify termination on disciplinary grounds?
Answer: The acts which justify termination on disciplinary grounds are:

  • Gross dishonesty
  • Gross negligence
  • Willful damage to property
  • Willful endangering the safety of others
  • Assault
  • Gross insubordination

Question: What are the guiding principles underpinning disciplinary procedures?
Answer: The following are the principles underpinning disciplinary procedures?

  • Corrective and not punitive
  • Consistency
  • Disciplinary hearing within reasonable time
  • Substantive Fairness
  • Procedural Fairness

Question: Under what circumstances should a sanction of termination of employment be considered?
Answer: Termination of employment should only take place in cases of serious or repeated misconduct when the employer is justified in concluding that the misconduct has made the continuation of the employment relationship intolerable.