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Bombardier Shorts employee hauled in front of HR over Union flag fluffy dice

By Rebecca Black

Published 06/08/2015

Bombardier’s Belfast base
Bombardier’s Belfast base
A pair of furry dice

A row has erupted at aerospace engineering giant Bombardier Shorts - over a small set of fluffy Union flag dice.

An employee of the firm has revealed his shock after being summoned to Human Resources and asked to remove the novelty item from their car.

The person, who is a long-term employee of the firm, had the dice hanging from the rear view mirror of the vehicle.

The car is his own, and does not belong to the company.

It would sit in the car park of one of the four sites where Shorts operates while he is at work.

However, on Tuesday the employee said he was stunned to be called to talk to Human Resources.

The employee was informed that someone had complained about the dice - which have been described to the Belfast Telegraph as "very small".

Human Resources instructed the employee to remove the dice and not to bring them back on to the premises as it had offended someone who works there.

The employee said he removed the dice because he feared he might lose his job if they did not.

The aeroplane manufacturer has refused to reveal who made the complaint.

Bombardier Shorts has four sites in Northern Ireland located in east Belfast, Newtownards, Dunmurry and Newtownabbey.

The firm manufactures components for airplanes and is one of the biggest private sector employees in Northern Ireland.

A spokeswoman for Bombardier Shorts confirmed the employee had been asked to remove the dice from his car.

She told the Belfast Telegraph that she was not aware of any similar incidents, and other such incidents on any of its sites were rare.

"We promote a neutral working environment across our sites and the company prohibits the wearing and displaying in the workplace of flags or symbols which may cause offence," she said.

"If employees have any concerns or issues regarding the neutrality of their working environment, they are encouraged to discuss them with their direct manager or the company's equal opportunities manager.

"Following an issue raised recently by an employee, we asked a colleague to remove a dice displaying a flag from his car on site."

When asked would the employee have lost his job had he refused to remove the dice, the spokeswoman said: "Our aim is to resolve such issues in a harmonious manner in the interests of all employees."

Bombardier's 5,500-strong Belfast workforce is currently working on the wings of the company's new C-Series jets, which go into service next year.

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