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Facebook pages demanded by bosses over misuse of sick leave

It has been reported recently that an Air New Zealand flight attendant who had been dismissed has been forced to hand over her bank records and Facebook pages to bosses in a row over sick leave.

Gina Kensington was sacked by the airline earlier this year after it claimed she misused two days leave to care for her sister. On taking her case to the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) in hope of being reinstated, the airline requested copies of her Facebook pages and bank records for the disputed days.

Ms Kensington argued that she should not have to disclose the details as there was ‘an expectation of privacy about personal and financial information.’ However, the ERA disagreed and forced her to hand over the details.

Both parties are now awaiting a ruling in the case which bears similarities with another in the country where New Zealander Bruce Taiapa was sacked after being pictured on Facebook at a school canoeing festival while being on a week’s sick leave. In his case the ERA ruled the sacking was justified.

To see what your employer thinks about the use of social media and what the penalties are for being found ‘throwing a sickie’ consult your employment handbook. For more information please contact Ashley Hunt, Carrie-Ann Randall or Vaishali Thakerar at Lawson-West on 0116 212 1000.

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