She told the court her stress was partly caused by the fact she could not perform her executive duties properly because she was not given the level of responsibility she was promised her role involved.
Dr Rennie said she told IOOF about her poor mental wellbeing, saying that she might need to take personal leave, adapt her role or make a WorkCover claim in response.
But despite acknowledging her concerns and telling her it would try to find her another role at the firm, Dr Rennie claimed that IOOF made her redundant within a week because of her disclosure.
She also claimed that IOOF did not consider her for any roles she applied for in the month after her redundancy, despite believing it to be a “redeployment period” to see if she could have another role in the company.
Dr Rennie wants the court to order IOOF to give her her job back, as well as compensation for her loss of work, damage to her reputation and future job prospects, and the “pain, suffering and trauma” she experienced.
But in a defence filed with the Federal Court, IOOF said Dr Rennie’s role was actually made redundant because of a restructure of the risk committee.
It denied that Dr Rennie said she might need to take personal leave, make a WorkCover claim or adjust her role. In fact, it said it offered Dr Rennie the option of taking personal leave but she said “she would prefer to continue to attend the workplace”.
The firm also said that the “redeployment” month referred to by Dr Rennie was actually her notice period, and that the only role she applied for in that time that of company secretary had already been filled.
Dr Rennie alleged that, as well as breaching employment law, IOOF engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct by promising her secure and long-term work before she took on her role.
Her redundancy followed IOOF CEO Renato Mota telling all his staff that their jobs were safe during the pandemic despite the widespread cuts tearing through corporate Australia, and allegedly promising Dr Rennie personally that she would have “secure and long-term employment”.
IOOF declined to comment on the details of the case on Monday, saying it was “inappropriate to do so” while it was before the courts, but slammed any suggestion that the two Fair Work actions were related.
“IOOF emphatically rejects any conflation of these cases and any extrapolation that it reflects on IOOFs culture,” a firm spokeswoman said.
“Managing workplace relations issues is an important part of business and IOOFs Code of Conduct, support processes and grievance handling process are a key part of our people and culture function.”

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