Telemarketer wins $5,000 despite 'smash her' comment

A Nelson telemarketer has been awarded $5,000 for wrongful dismissal after telling her supervisor she was going to 'smash her'. File photo / Thinkstock
A Nelson telemarketer has been awarded $5,000 for wrongful dismissal after telling her supervisor she was going to 'smash her'. File photo / Thinkstock

A telemarketer who told her supervisor she was going to "smash her" has been awarded $5000 for wrongful dismissal.

Karyn Cumming, from Nelson, was dismissed from her job with Absolute Insurance after the heated exchange.

But the Employment Relations Authority awarded her compensation after deciding she was not given the opportunity to be heard before being fired.

The sacking followed an argument between Cumming and her supervisor Chantelle Boon in January 2010.

Although the women disputed details of the cause, the ruling said it was accepted that they yelled at each other and Cumming said she would "smash" her boss if she did not shut her mouth.

Cumming said her "erratic" supervision and other factors, including her partner's dismissal by the company, had caused her stress and led to the outburst.

Immediate after management called at which Cumming had no support person.

At a second meeting she grudgingly apologised to Boon, but warned of further reaction if her supervisor "got in her face again", said the ruling.

Cumming was then dismissed after director Craig Hudgell said "the threat of violence outweighed all other considerations".

Absolute management acknowledged the dismissal was unjustified.

The authority ordered the company to pay Cumming $5000 and reimburse her filing fee of $71.55.

- APNZ

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