Jillian Ramsden, 46, moved from Queensland in May to take up a $105,000-a-year job with WorkSafe as a health adviser. She was promoted after just one month.She received no warnings about any problem with her work.
But Ms Ramsden alleges that three days after she started work, months of relentless bullying began.A female colleague allegedly screamed at her, criticised her work and constantly undermined her.
On July 27 2011, Ms Ramsden lodged a successful WorkCover claim – which is administered by WorkSafe – after her GP advised she was too stressed to work.
On July 28 2011, she was told she was sacked in a letter delivered by express courier at 8am.
The letter claimed Ms Ramsden had been dismissed for “performance accountability”,
Ms Ramsden yesterday lodged a claim with Fair Work Australia alleging she was sacked because she lodged the WorkCover claim.
Ms Ramsden said she was humiliated.
“I’m suing because I want the truth to come out. There is a toxic environment at WorkSafe. There’s a wider cultural issue there,” Ms Ramsden said.
After being sacked, Ms Ramsden said she was unable to cope for almost two weeks and became suicidal.
“I had no support. There is a total culture of fear there. God help you if you speak up to complain,” Ms Ramsden said.
Maurice Blackburn lawyer Josh Bornstein said WorkSafe – which is running a poster campaign encouraging employees to report workplace bullying – was unfit to fulfil its charter.