Thursday, September 28, 2017

::Unlawful Dimissal / Termination during pregnancy/ SAHM::

This story might be long and boring. But I have to let it go. I so geram.

This is something that I don't expect. I'm so mad, demotivated. Crying at night when suddenly thinking about it. But during my pregnancy, I know I have to put this aside. I like to work. I love to sit in front of laptop and do my task. I love IT world. That's what I did since past 2006, when I was started to work. 

I left my previous company, "T" last Oct 2016 to join new company, "H". I love work with company T because I am part of committee whom always involve with company event and activities. This is something I love to do and people recognize and appreciate me. I love my task but I don't love my team mates. They will try to find you fault when they knew that I am right in certain things. Plus my lead always supporting me because I know what she wants to develop and build in the team she's managing. It's been going on for 1 year, even you try to change and just go with the flow, still we don't have chemistry as team mate.

So, with company H, I am hired as permanent and I work based on project for client. It was supposedly 1 year project. All my team members don't have an experience much with the position they offered for this client. I am from this background. So much easier for me to do this job. I taught them a lot how to do this task, how to investigate issue, how to liaise with user, bla.. bla.. Until the project completed before the expectation date. It was completed on April. So this is where all things happen to me. My life changed.

My reporting manager called for a meeting mentioned that 2 from 4 of us have to out from the project. They chose me and the other person whom always close to me. Who always seeks for help to be better in performing his job. But we stay with company H even we already out from this job for client until they assign new project for us. But strange, they chose 2 person in the team whom always perform the task instead of those person whom always on MC, MIA, not doing task given and always on escalation. I've asked client why they chose us, but there is no reason and they try to avoid to answer it. I have asked my reporting manager too but still no valid reason they gave to me. My reporting manager keep saying the project is completed earlier than the expected date then no further task to do. On the last day, the manager at client side said, client can't afford to pay company H anymore. But I still believe this is not the valid reason.

I am SAHM since May until now. Last May 22nd, I got email and call from HR manager saying that they want to terminate me because of redundancy and they can't find suitable post that fit my qualification and experience. Please take note ya, if redundancy is the reason they use, it should be affected more people not only 1 person. Even I am still  bonded with them for 1 year because they bought me from previous company. The other friend, got a job after out from previous project, which is the post he got I can and manage to do as well. So is there any  different? Is it because he's a man and they don't trust a lady/girl to do it? I am even got feedback from team member and lead from my previous client that i am good. They are terminating me during I am pregnant 5 months. On 23rd May, I went to Industry Relation Department (IR Deparment) to get an advice about this before my meeting with HR Manager on the next day because I just don't agree they are terminating me with above reason. They hired me as permanent and this is their responsibility to find new project for me even the project completed earlier than the expected date. IR Department don't accept the reason they stated in the notice. They agreed with me, they have seems another reason to terminate me. So, IR Department asked to go to office and listed what HR Manager would like to say. If HR Manager stick with the termination, they ask me to come back to lodge a report to this company. 

Still, HR Manager stick with the results but she said at the same time, she will ask the responsible team to find a job or suitable post for me within the same company. I have applied internally as well because I seems don't trust they will do task to find a new post for me. I even ask my friend whose out from the previous project if his new team would like to have me. His manager looked at my resume but then he said, the problem is I am pregnant. Danngg.. I got a call from HR Manager last June and said, there is 1 team hiring and she sets interview for me. The manager is okay and even said that this is something I can do because I have experience with it. I don't have a problem to travel pun. The next day I got a call for another project, and my profile has been finalized and selected. So I feel relieve. But HR Manager Malaysia doesn't aware about this. Because the one called me is HR Department from another country. I believe they found my profile from the application I've applied internally. They asked me to prepare documents for employment. But suddenly after 2 weeks, I've been told the position doesn't materialized. Strange. I have asked HR Manager about the previous post he asked me to come interview for, she said I have not been chosen. Because what the hiring manager said, totally different. So I don't expect this. 

At the same time, I got lawyer whom always advice me. I told her about my case. She's said this is strong case for unlawful dismissal due to pregnancy and company H don't want to pay until I've completed my maternity leave. I have asked my previous reporting manager if previous client looking for replacement as 1 of my ex team member just got terminated 24 hours because MIA for more than 1 month. But he clearly said that my maternity leave is a concern. So now I know, I have been terminated due to my pregnancy. In the clause of labour law or my offer letter, there is no clause saying that I can't pregnant while employment. 

So, as per advice by the lawyer, I would go to IR deparment to lodge a report. I can sue them using the law firm and ask them to stop terminating me tomorrow, but once I come back from maternity leave, company H  will find small tiny mistake on me for a revenge. I don't want to work with the company which actually so kelam kabut and discriminate people.

So on Aug 10th, the so called peaceful negotiation was held at IR department. I came alone, there was IR officer and representative from company H which were HR Manager, Project Manager and my reporting manager. The officer would like to know stories from both sides. So I told mine. It was peaceful meeting according to the IR officer which means no argument whatsoever. HR and my project manager told me that, they have to do that because it is difficult to them to find new project for me due to my experience and qualification match managerial level while most of the project or job available on that time for analyst level. But yeah, still I can't accept it. This company is international company and i was hired as permanent. They are responsible to find suitable post for me. Not by terminate me during my pregnancy. They should be able to wait until the date of the contract end or wait till my bonded month end which is supposedly by end of this October. since no agreement on that day, IR Officer suggested me to discuss with my family next action. She wants to know my decision by next day. So I've gather advice from my close friend, my ex bosses even from this labour law forum which is manage by lawyer and they suggested me termination benefit. At least to cover me during my pregnant month and maternity leave until I manage to go to interview and find a new job. So I chose termination benefit then first. According to IR officer, if this company doesn't agree with termination benefit, case still go to Minister of HR for review and would probably go to IR Court which is something that company should avoid. 

2 weeks later, i got a call from IR officer mentioned that company agreed to compensate (they called ex-gratia) me according to the amount I've asked before. Alhamdulillah. At least something. I've been asked to come to IR Office to sign MOA on 6th Sept.

1 thing I learn from this experience, someday we will be on top and someday we will be at the bottom. Who knows. I pray hard to Allah to give me strength. I admit, I'm not a perfect muslim, but the more you talk to HIM, the more you get close to HIM, you will realized someday HE will return you with something. Thanks Allah. 

If anyone of you experience unlawful dimissal. I have few advice: 

1) Please share it with your close friend.
2) Soon you got the termination letter (please make sure you have it in black and white), ask for a meeting with HR and get them explain to you about this action. 
3) Go to IR department, and tell them about this. They will advice you what to do. At the same time, you can go to this forum, to ask opinion or find an answer about your case. You can read mine at this link:
4) If company serve you with 1 or 2 months termination notice, lodge a report to IR department a day after your last day of the termination. If with immediate effect, you can lodge a report on the same day.
5) Please make sure you have keep black and white proof for any conversation with your HR or manager

I'm not the type SAHM if WAHM maybe yes. 1 day maybe. But I really hope I could find a job anytime soon. Wish me luck

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