I am from New Zealand. Can I ask you for help? I am working for a nonprofit. I have a concern against my manager. It was

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Customer: Hello I am from New Zealand. Can I ask you for help?
JA: Was this discussed with a manager or HR? Or with a lawyer?
Customer: I am working for a nonprofit. I have a concern against my manager. It was already discussed by the Board meeting.
JA: Are you an "at will" employee? Do you belong to a union?
Customer: No, I don't belong to a union.
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Dear Sir/MadamI work for a nonprofit organisation in Auckland as a contractor.Last year, I raised a concern about the management of the organisation to the Board. It was about my manager requesting me to work on an irrelevant job and her inconsistency in dealing with it. I questioned her about it, but because of the nature of the job, I wanted to keep it confidential. I didn't seek any help from someone outside the workplace.I experienced a lot of unreasonable treatment by her (including intimidation) while making a lot of personal sacrifices in handling the job.Then, I requested the Board to intervene the issue. In a Board meeting last August, it was decided that the Board would make recommendations about the scope of the organisation's activities and have my manager answer to my questions to clarify all my concerns.I had waited for the Board to be ready, but I hadn't heard from them for a long time.Last month, suddenly I came to know that the last Board meeting decided to close the issue without my presence, being controlled by my manager.We are very small organisation with two staff (my manager and I). Therefore there should be no problem for me to raise concerns directly to the Board. However, my manager always interfere between me and the Board.For example, it was my manager wrote a letter to inform me of the closure of the issue on behalf of the Board. This is strange because my concern was against her. I find that she violated the neutrality of the Board.Then I requested the manager and the Board to rethink their decision. My manager requested me to send a list of my questions that was originally submitted to the Board.She gave me unsatisfactory answers, and so I said that I was going to make my comments on her answers. In response, she requested me to send the comments by 5 pm on Monday 13 April.I argued that it should be the Board members who could decide by when I would need to send my comments, but she insisted that, because my contract agreement says that I report to her, I should send my comments to her. Again, I am not happy with the way she deals with my concern.The Board members are not familiar with these matters, unfortunately. They just respond to my manager's call passively. No Board members seem to be able to respond to my concerns now.Another example of inadequacy is that my manager threatened me in her answer to my question. She says that "regarding the principles on how I operate, if you disagree, you are welcome to leave the organisation." This is strange again because it seems that she believes that she is everything in the organisation, which shouldn't be like that in a nonprofit organisation.
Answered by Chris The Lawyer in 9 mins 2 years ago
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Chris The Lawyer
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

Hi
I am a New Zealand lawyer based in Wellington and will help you with your question today. Please give me a minute to read the question

Customer
Hello. Thank you.
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

What are the consequences for you in dealing with this?

Customer
I am currently in trouble. I am writing my comments to her answers now. I am not sure if the Board will respond to it properly. My manager may interfere again.
Customer
I spent a lot of time on this unnecessary disputes. I am stressed out. I am struggling to make myself understood by the manager and the Board.
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

Have you considered work place mediation?

Customer
I have no idea about workplace mediation.
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

An independent mediator could help resolve the disputes in a confidential and better fashion than other dispute resolution

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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

You could both agree on someone experienced who could help resolve the issues by discussion and compromise

Customer
Is it different from employment tribunal?
Customer
How can I find a mediator?
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

Yes, it is informal and enables both sides to have an open discussion. You can find mediators in a few places, like Fairway Resolution or AMINZ. I suggest you start by suggesting this to see if the board and your manager agree

Customer
What if she disagrees with it? I feel she dislikes things like that...
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

I am sure the board would rather mediation was used rather than going to expensive lawyers

Customer
Thank you very much. I will try to do that. I appreciate your help.
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Chris The Lawyer, Expert

Thank you for the reply and for using this site. You may ask further questions or rate this answer when you are ready.

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