Fresh calls for work Christmas parties to be banned in Ireland

Fresh calls for work Christmas parties to be banned in Ireland

WORK CHRISTMAS parties in Ireland should be cancelled and the annual festive get-together scrapped altogether.

That is according to a leading employment law expert who warned the Irish Examiner that these events are often a “recipe for disaster”.

John Boylan, a founding partner of BDM Boylan Solicitors in Cork told the newspaper there has been a significant rise in the number of harassment cases and claims of unfair dismissal arising from the annual Christmas party.

He estimates that his first has handled “seven or eight cases in the last two years alone” describing the incidents as “very serious”.

“Companies and employers need to think carefully if holding a Christmas party is the right thing for their company, for their staff,” he said.

"With the damage we are seeing arising out of Christmas parties, my advice to large employers, in particular, is to consider not organising the event at all.”

Mr Boylan was particularly wary of consuming alcohol during festive get-togethers, citing it as a main contributor to the various cases of gross misconduct he has dealt with, which have involved the use of drugs and, in some instances, assaults both physical or sexual.

The warning comes ahead of a busy few weeks of pubs and revellers across Ireland.

With many partaking in the popular 12 Pubs of Christmas bar crawl, the overriding message is to take care and drink slowly and in moderation.