Belfast Telegraph

Number of suspended Firstsource call centre staff let back to work

By Donna Deeney

A number of workers suspended from a call centre almost three weeks ago have been told they can return and no further action will be taken.

Firstsource suspended more than 100 of its Londonderry-based staff at the start of January while it investigated what it described as "possible breaches of policy and procedure".

Union officials supporting the workers say they are hopeful the rest of those suspended will soon be back at their desks but have called on the company to state publicly why it decided to suspend so many members of staff.

Liam Gallagher from Derry Trades Council said lessons needed to be learned from the way the situation was handled and called on Firstsource to engage with unions in the future.

He said: "Our understanding of the situation is that the initial investigation will be concluded over the next few days but what we do know is that the procedures we had been asking for have been adhered to, and that is to be welcomed.

"Some of the staff suspended have already been informed that they can return to work and we are hoping the rest of the workers will soon be told the same thing.

"We understand that there was a problem that the client wasn't happy with the procedures within Firstsource and in our opinion the company's response was a knee-jerk reaction to immediately suspend a large number of workers.

"They were left feeling very uncertain and concerned about their futures but also left feeling very embarrassed by the manner in which they were suspended.

"The company needs to say publicly what the problem was and to apologise to the staff, but what is important is that lessons are learned and that the company engages with trades unions in the future."

A spokeswoman for Firstsource said: "The company is working to complete the investigation as quickly as possible. A small number of employees are returning to work. The investigation is concluded for those individuals and no further action is being taken. The company has no further updates to make as the investigation is still technically ongoing."

Belfast Telegraph


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