Employee claims she was dismissed after falling down stairs

A former flight attendant sustained injuries while at an Emirates training facility

Employee claims she was dismissed after falling down stairs
Ciara Burke, a 23-year-old from Perth, has claimed she was dismissed from her job as a flight attendant after falling down a flight of stairs at the Emirates training college in Dubai.

Burke was wearing her uniform's red heels when she fell and was forced to take time off work to recover from injuries to her back, leg and ankle. Moreover, her foot was placed in a cast and then a moon boot, and she was forced to spend her final days on probation in doctors' appointments.

Before her fall, Burke had spent almost six months working on flights to Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

Despite being praised by her colleagues for her "amazing communication skills" and “professionalism”, Burke did not pass her probation period.

“I fell down an entire flight of stairs severely injuring my back and tearing a ligament in my ankle while at work, and the company covered it up,” said Burke.

The company initially supported her, paid her Dubai medical costs and told her to "take care of [her]self”.

Burke claims she was then told to prepare herself for a 50/50 chance she would be fired after a panel met to decide her fate.

An Emirates manager allegedly told Buke that it's policy that the company will give her a representative from HR and that she is not allowed to be present during the meeting.

As her former colleagues graduated in April, Burke was told her contract had been terminated because she had taken excessive approved leave and sick leave.

“A few weeks after the accident Emirates fired me and told me that my accident was NOT classed as a workplace accident but instead a ‘freak accident,” she said.

“I wasn’t allowed to defend myself or appeal the decision and there are no unions in Dubai that I could turn to for help.

“I was heartbroken and the saddest I have ever been. I was injured, alone and vulnerable.”

An Emirates spokesperson said while they cannot comment on particular past or present employees, the panel thoroughly reviews “all aspects of a crew member's performance prior to any decision being made".

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