Suspended staff statement

As a trade union we do not comment on the details of disciplinary matters but such has been the publicity created by the recent suspensions in a council department (Seven more suspended in fraud probe, News, May 11), we feel there is a need to set some of the record straight.

Firstly, the suspensions are “precautionary” for the process of the investigation and do not imply any guilt. Often such suspensions are as much to protect the member of staff concerned as for any other reason.

Secondly, the numbers and proportion of staff suspended, quoted in some media reports, are exaggerated and the majority of staff are carrying on working under difficult conditions to provide a crucial service.

And thirdly, comments about being “sent out to walk the streets” looking for notices to serve, most likely refers to a previous practice of proactively trying to identify any danger of loose masonry masonry. Evening News readers will recall the tragedy and near misses in the past due to falling masonry.

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