Donna Traynor tribunal: BBC clarifies cap on redundancy payouts after speculation on settlement with ex-employee
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Traynor, a former BBC Newsline presenter, had alleged she was discriminated against on the basis of age, sex and disability.
An industrial tribunal between her and her former employer was resolved without any admission of liability in Belfast on Friday.
No financial figures were detailed in the statement.
Subsequent to the conclusion of the tribunal, there was widespread speculation on the amount she may have been paid.
In a social media post on Saturday, Ms Traynor said: “There has been speculation about the amount to be paid in the settlement of my employment tribunal case against the BBC and Adam Smyth.
“This figure has been exaggerated. While I am very happy with what was agreed, I want to make it clear that I brought this case for more important reasons than simply compensation.
“I believe I have achieved this and now intend to put the matter behind me.”
A BBC spokesperson also issued a statement to quash speculation about the sums paid.
"Speculation on the settlement amount is far from accurate," they said. "We settled Donna's claims at a level of payment consistent with what we would pay out in a redundancy-type arrangement."
Now, on Monday, BBC NI has confirmed to the News Letter that its cap on redundancy payments is £150,000.
While this does not directly relate to the sum she was awarded, it does appear to confirm that the sum she was given would not have been much greater than this – at most; the corporation had gone on record to say the payment given to her was "consistent with what we would pay out in a redundancy-type arrangement”.
This apparently quashes speculation that Ms Traynor may have received a much more substantial sum.
Ulster University law lecturer Rosemary Craig said going through such a process is incredibly stressful.
"With regard to any case that will end up in an employment tribunal or a fair employment tribunal or an industrial tribunal, the cost of stress, the emotional upheaval - you can't quantify it - because it consumes your life," she said. "It is a very, very difficult situation for anyone to find themselves in."
In 2022 a former Department of Agriculture vet Dr Tamara Bronckaers received a £1.25m settlement from her former employee along with an "unreserved" apology.
An industrial tribunal found she had been constructively dismissed after raising concerns about animal welfare and failures in traceability in the meat supply chain.
Her £1.25m settlement is believed to be a record sum for a tribunal in Northern Ireland.
"It was an example to every public authority in Northern Ireland," Ms Craig said. "It was like a volcano, that's rippling and rippling and then eventually erupts, causing shockwaves through an entire organisation. And the time and the expense that it takes to prepare a case like this before it ever sees the light of day in a tribunal is phenomenal.
“The person bringing the claim has to face further distress and embarrassment. Physically going to a Tribunal, sitting there day after day, being examined and cross examined is a horrendous experience for anyone.”
In May last year an interim figure for the legal costs in Dr Bronckaers case was reportedly £277,000.
However no details on legal costs have been released in relation to Ms Traynor’s case.