'20 people suspended, 3 fired' in Cork for behaviour at work Christmas parties
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'20 people suspended, 3 fired' in Cork for behaviour at work Christmas parties

YOU MIGHT have had The Fear after your work Christmas party this year, but count yourself lucky you're not one of these people.

One of the partners of a leading Cork law firm has told local radio show C103 Cork Today that he knows of 20 cases where people were suspended for bad behaviour at Christmas work parties, and that three of those people were later dismissed.

John Boylan of BDM Solicitors referenced a rise in the abuse of managers, physical fighting, drug use and 'sexual behaviour' as factors into the large number of suspensions, and stressed that when it comes to office Christmas parties "your behaviour is supposed to be the same as if you were in the office".

"A lot of employers are discovering a new trend which is nudity at parties,or people using the free bar [who are] not used to taking shots and brandy," Mr Boylan continued.

"A lot of Irish people hear free bar and think there is no tomorrow and they get literally out of their mind hammered."

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Mr Boylan also referenced the use of mobile phones and videos going viral as a reason for some suspensions, as once such behaviour is caught on camera and spread around "there is no going back".

"Someone sent me in a video this year where you had a man in his 60s on the dancefloor nude and if I had gotten it, unfortunately that means it has gone viral.

"If someone gets to that state they will probably not remember the next day - and we are finding a lot of places are losing these employees as they are not even turning up the next day or the next Monday out of embarrassment."

Colleagues getting drunk and not thinking of the consequences of their actions was also a major problem in a different way, Mr Boylan added, saying work Christmas parties should not include overnight accommodation as "if there are to be drink-induced relationships starting and they are married people or people in relationships already" ... "their judgement goes out the window and then there are rooms upstairs booked for them".

"The two find it very hard to work together after that".

Mr Boylan suggested that employers offer a different incentive to boost employee morale, suggesting that instead of a Christmas party, employees are gifted with a €500 tax-free voucher.

We certainly wouldn't say no to that.

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