Aer Lingus employee who called colleagues ‘bullies and sluts’ has had unfair dismissal claim dismissed

Aer Lingus has fired a long-serving customer service agent after she allegedly called her co-workers “bullies and sluts” in a workplace rant.

The Employment Tribunal today dismissed an unfair dismissal claim brought by Virginia Linehan after finding that Aer Lingus’ decision to dismiss her was not unfair and fell within the category of reasonable responses by a employer.

The employment tribunal’s decision took into account Ms Linehan’s public role at the airline and was endorsed by the deputy chair, Louise O’Donnell, upholding a similar finding by the Premises Relations Commission. work (WRC) in July 2023.

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The case was brought to the employment tribunal on appeal by Ms Linehan, who was employed by Aer Lingus from July 2009 until her dismissal in May 2021.

In upholding the WRC’s decision, Ms O’Donnell said Ms Linehan had acknowledged in her submissions to the Court that her behavior on July 31, 2019 was not acceptable behavior in the workplace and that she totally regretted this. that had happened.

Under cross-examination at the court hearing, Ms Linehan confirmed she had called two people bullies and bitches, but said it was a stress reaction. When asked what triggered the reaction, Ms Linehan said it was years of bullying.

When asked if she agreed that her conduct was completely unacceptable, Ms Linehan replied “no”. However, Ms Linehan confirmed she would find it unacceptable if anyone called her a bitch or a bully.