Concluding statement on
whistle blowing investigation
FOLLOWING a number of whistle blowing
complaints made in 2015, the Trust undertook rigorous and detailed
investigations into allegations against four members of senior management. They
were the former Chief Executive, the former Director of HR and Communications,
the former Chief Operating Officer and the Deputy Director of Performance.
The investigation determined that the Deputy Director of Performance had no case
to answer. Allegations against the remaining three individuals were taken to
independent disciplinary panels for consideration.
An independent disciplinary panel exonerated the Chief Operating Officer of the
allegations against her. Given that the Deputy Director of Performance and the
former Chief Operating Officer were exonerated, it would not be in the public
interest to release the details of the unproven allegations against them.
Following a disciplinary hearing and subsequent appeal, which was successful in
part, it was found that the former Director of HR and Communications had
committed misconduct and would have been dismissed had she not retired from her
position before the disciplinary hearing. The findings of the independent panel
were that she had:
► Failed to follow HR due process in relation to recruitment and disciplinary
procedures on several occasions.
► Negligently failed to maintain a grip of a key national HR project leading to
potential financial loss to the Trust.
It was further found, by a separate independent disciplinary panel and appeal
panel, that the former Chief Executive had committed gross misconduct. He was
dismissed without notice. The nature of the findings against the former Chief
Executive were that he had:-
► Negligently breached the Trust's governance arrangements on a number of
► Failed to comply with the Trust and the NHS's conduct requirements in his
approach to whistle blowing complaints.
► Failed to meet required conduct standards in his behaviour towards colleagues.
► Breached his duty of confidentiality towards the Trust.
As the Trust has previously confirmed, no aspect of the whistle blowing
complaints, investigation or disciplinary processes related to issues of patient
care or safety. The Trust can also confirm that neither the former Chief
Executive nor the former Director of HR and Communications derived a personal
benefit (financial or otherwise) from their actions.
Richard Fraser, Trust Chair, said:- "Throughout this process, the Trust
has aimed to ensure fairness to the individuals concerned while acknowledging a
legitimate public interest in the timescale and costs involved. We believe by
disclosing this new information today, we are meeting that public interest. The
Trust does not consider that it would be in the public interest to provide any
further information. No further comment will be made on this matter."