Senior Executive Awarded £100,000 After She was Sacked For Whistleblowing on Dating App Flutrr’s CEO

In Ms L Cameron-Peck v Ethical Social Group Limited, an employment tribunal heard how Fluttr CEO Rhonda Alexander forced her colleague to resign. As such, Ms Cameron-Peck was awarded £97,361 after making several claims, including that she’s been constructively unfairly dismissed.

Below, we discuss the facts of the case and the judgment the employment tribunal came to. If you have experienced an unfair dismissal and want to claim compensation, get in touch with Redmans Solicitors now. We are employment law specialists and could assess your circumstances before finding your claim eligibility.

To begin:

The Facts in Ms L Cameron-Peck v Ethical Social Group Limited

Background – Fluttr CEO Bullies Staff

Ms Cameron-Peck (“The Claimant”) began working for Wndr Social Ltd, a subsidiary of Ethical Social Group (ESG) Limited (“The Respondent”), on 1 August 2021. Prior to her appointment, she’d been successful in the IT and digital service industry for more than 35 years. Also, the respondent had another subsidiary, Fluttr Ltd, a UK dating app that claimed to create a “safe space” for women.

From 9 August until 2 September, several employees complained to the claimant about the behaviour of Fluttr CEO Rhonda Alexander. Some claimed that she’d treated them in an “undignified manner”, whilst others felt embarrassed at witnessing such treatment.

The claimant felt this behaviour amounted to bullying and complained to ESG’s CEO, Mr Graham Pullam, the following day. She WhatsApp messaged him, talking about the complaints, including bullying and rudeness she’d experienced herself. Subsequently, Mr Pullam requested to speak with the claimant on 4 September to discuss the complaints in more detail.

On 6 September, the claimant emailed Mr Pullam about the behaviour of the Fluttr CEO. She outlined how Rhonda Alexander was “passive-aggressive”, “manipulative”, and sometimes “downright rude”. She added that employees had been humiliated in online meetings, and one had been reduced to tears by the Fluttr CEO.

Claimant Belittled After Speaking Out About Fluttr CEO

Despite the claimant enlightening Mr Pullam about the behaviour of Rhonda Alexander, appropriate action wasn’t taken. Instead, he removed her from meetings with the Fluttr CEO in early October. 

Then, on 7 October, he belittled the claimant in front of others during a Teams call, accusing her of being difficult. She stated that since complaining to Mr Pullam, he would speak to her in a “condescending and derogatory manner”. What’s more, on 13 October, he belittled her again during her lunch break when he raised his voice and left her tearful.

On 19 October, the claimant learned she’d been suspended pending an investigation but didn’t receive details of the alleged misconduct. The suspension letter stated that details would be provided if grounds for disciplinary were found. However, the claimant resigned on 28 October with immediate effect, stating that the respondent had breached the employment contract.

Among other things, she talked about how the respondent had failed to investigate her complaints about the Fluttr CEO properly. She also stated she’d been threatened with legal action after whistleblowing about the respondent’s business wrongdoings she’d witnessed. Subsequently, she went to an employment tribunal, claiming detrimental treatment after making protected disclosures, constructive unfair dismissal and contract breach.

The Employment Tribunal’s Judgment

The employment tribunal began by uncovering whether the claimant had, in fact, made any protected disclosures. After whistleblowing potential bullying by Fluttr CEO Rhonda Alexander and the business’ wrongdoings, the tribunal felt she had.

Following this, the tribunal looked to determine whether the claimant had been subject to a detriment after making such disclosures. Here, they stated the respondent’s failure to investigate the behaviour of Rhonda Alexander properly subjected the claimant to a detriment. That’s because, rather than attempting to curb the behaviour of the Fluttr CEO, Mr Pullam treated the claimant as the problem.

Furthermore, they believed the claimant hadn’t been suspended or investigated with good cause. The tribunal explained that the protected disclosures made were the actual reason the respondent was trying to push her out. As such, they stated the detriment experienced had broken the implied term of trust and confidence and breached their contract.

Therefore, the tribunal ruled the claimant had been constructively unfairly dismissed due to the respondent’s breach. In the end, the tribunal awarded the claimant £97,361 for unfair dismissal, inclusive of a 25% uplift after failing to follow the ACAS Code of Practice.

Contact us today if you have faced similar circumstances and don’t know how to proceed. Redmans Solicitors are specialists in the employment law sector and could advise on your possible next steps after discussing your circumstances. We also offer various funding options to help meet the different needs of each client.

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