A care manager has won an employment tribunal against her former bosses for constructive unfair dismissal.

Nicola Barber worked for Mapleford Nursing Home, run by Krinvest Care Group LIMITED, in Huncoat for almost 20 years, but in April 2022 handed in her resignation when bosses took away her responsibilities leaving her unable to carry out any work.

After she was promoted from care supervisor to care manager in February 2022 and given a pay rise, Ms Barber, who had worked her way up from a kitchen assistant, found her responsibilities slowly dwindled, tasks were taken from her, and she was ultimately left with nothing to do.

A report from the employment tribunal, held in October 2022 but updated earlier this month, stated: “Following her appointment as care manager in March 2022, the claimant was not given a job description, nor was she provided with a supervision meeting explaining verbally what would be required in her new role.

“Instead, over a period of weeks the claimant found her existing roles which she carried out as a care supervisor were gradually given to other members of staff and she was left with no work to carry out herself.

“No new roles commensurate with her care manager roles were provided instead.”

Ms Barber had a meeting with the care home interim manager who told here they would “work through” the issues, but no resolution was reached and in the absence of any progress in her being provided with job roles, she decided to hand in her resignation.

The tribunal ruled Ms Barber had been left in a position where she was without duties and understandably felt that she had not been given an effective job within the organisation.

Despite raising this matter with her bosses, there had been a failure to resolve the matter or to offer a grievance to ensure that a way forward could be identified.

The report stated: “I am satisfied that the claimant's resignation amounted to a dismissal, and it was clearly caused by the removal of her duties and the failure to provide new duties commensurate with the new care manager role that she had been offered and given.

“I also find that as a consequence the respondent breached its duty of trust and confidence towards the claimant and that this amounted to a fundamental breach.

“This breach was the cause for the claimant's resignation.

“She clearly explained why in her email (as well as in previous conversations) that her reason for terminating her employment was the removal of her existing roles as a care supervisor and the failure to provide any new roles as a care manager.

“The respondent failed to show any potentially fair reason for the dismissal and did not appear from the response presented, to be offering any reason as to them behaving fairly towards the claimant in this matter.

“I am satisfied that the respondent did not act at all fairly towards the claimant in this case.

“Accordingly, the complaint of constructive unfair dismissal by reason of the respondent’s conduct is well-founded and succeeds.”

Ms Barber told the tribunal her mother had also worked for Mapleford but had resigned as a care manager in January 2022, prompted by safeguarding issues allegedly relating to difficulties with the building, including the longstanding failure to repair a lift.

The tribunal noted Ms Barber did not specifically bring a whistleblowing complaint and any disclosures which may have been made by her mother were not part of the issues being heard.

However, she did question whether the problems which arose with her role in 2022 may have been connected with her mother’s actions at the beginning of the year, although these questions have been unfounded and remain unanswered.

Ms Barber was awarded £4,088 for constructive unfair dismissal.