Tuesday, 29 July 2008


An Ex Liverpool City Council Employee has started an E-Petition to the Prime Minister Gordon Brown asking for a change in the law in how Bullying and Harassment complaints are investigated.

Vicky Gray the petitioner claims she was bullied for 12 Months by a manager of Liverpool City Council. She compiled a grievance and found that Liverpool City Council investigated themselves and decided they were not guilty.

Vicky felt the Local Government Ombudsman should have been the investigating officer and wrote asking for this.

She was informed this is not one of the duties of the Ombudsman.See below for the full details and sign her petition.

Keep up the good and very brave work Vicky.


petition creator
I was bullied by a manager for over 12 months. I made a formal complaint to the Local Government Ombudsman with regards to the way Liverpool City Council dealt with my Grievance and Appeal. I was informed that they were unable to investigate personnel matters. The Grievance was based on Bullying and Oppressive Behaviour the witness’ where not questioned on these matters. There are 34 County Councils and 238 District Councils in England, 32 in Scotland and 22 in Wales. How many employees have been subjected to Bullying and Oppressive Behaviour by managers who have in effect dealt with the matters internally and reached the required result the council wishes to achieve. Local councils investigate there own complaints, which I feel is a conflict of interest. I feel this matter needs addressing and the way to achieve this is through Legislation in the House of Commons, by introducing a Local Government Bill, or Parliament to extend the powers of the Local Government Ombudsman to include personnel issues.

This is why I have started this petition. The law needs to be changed.

Current signatories

Vicky Gray, the Petition Creator, joined by:
Philip Glover
Hannah Gray
Mrs F Gray
Mr G Gray
C. Gray
Dick King
S King
Ben Parish
Jennifer Gracher
V Gray
j webster
Andy Ashley
Simon Elliott
Richard Ascough
Judith Moore
Andrew McLeod
William Egan
Dermot McCluskey
i saunderson
James Wafer
John Howson
Alan Nurse
S. May
robert robinson
Catherine Robinson
Sandra Robinson
Hazel Jacobson
Stephanie France
Belen Carsi
Ramraj Balloo
Fiona Norris
clare khalil
Carole Hirst
Murdo MacLeod
Marina Yates
Rea McCullough
Alison Fisher
Penny Allen
Sue Pritchard
Audrey Stevenson
Timhar Asnawi
Rosemary Perry
John Robertson
joanne irwin
Kirsty Gray
sharon davies
Gareth Davies
kelly miller
danielle glenister
Lisa Morgan
Margaret Dorsman
Raj Sethi
Sean O'Connor
Adrian Melia
Margaret King; very sorry to hear about your experience
Leoni Sullivan
Dr Howard Fredrics
Marina Yates
S Adams
Denny Tait
Martin Morton
Andy Horton
Stuart Dixon
Andrea Choraffa
William Nolan
Jo Anne Brown
sondra lieber
Nathan Thomas Trout
Owais Rajput
matthew wright
Nathaniel Mehr
Ann Whaley
rachel grogan
Sonia Colque
mike cotten
Cllr Sandra West
Mark Boardman
Scott Johnston
Daniela Andjelic
M Negus
Jeremy Bushell
Anne McAllister
Colin Welch
Andrea Vaz
William Love
Trevor Nunn LGOwatcher
P Nunn LGO victim
A Johnson PSOW
Keith Edmunds
Linda Hartley
Amanda Scarsbrook
Maria Dawson
Chris Swann
Gillian Marchant
Anthony Ashton
john mckenna
Catherine Taylor
lynda Diggins
Allie Bell
jo fisher
Helen Evans
Andy Gladwin
Paul Cardin
Mona Fayad
Ian Johnston
Vanessa Green
Jenny Brook
Victoria Lloyd
A. Warden
Mary Watson
Jayne Williams
Linzi Thomas
moira sinclair
Geoff Pope
Nicholas Blitz (former Unitary Authority Member)
Anita Smart
Stella Bernardi
David Daniels
M. Williams
H. Williams
W. Williams
B. Williams
Lorna Bambridge
jeanette ferguson
jean ferguson
josie mooney in support of jeanette ferguson and all weorkers bullied by liverpool city council
l russell
Craig Stuart - GMB
Kay B
S Aresti
Bethan Williams
Martin Stock
Bruce McQuillan
Martin Gowans
John Carnell
Phil Bishop
John Wiseman
Frank French
Christine French
Sandra Gribben
Jim Jepps
Daniel Gray
Lynne Henshall
Stephen Gray
Stephen Sellers
Lindsay Brown
Helen Marshall
Nicholas Goldberg
Susan Grisbrook
James Ennis
john simpson
Alison Schofield
Mark Glover
John Wood
Tom Read
Natalie Stear
Charlotte Peters Rock
Stephanie David
Yvonne Corser
Eric Lee
Laura Lambden
Sarah Bull
Claire Gray
Kelly Parker
sarah richardson
kevin marsh
Neil Thurogood
Lynda Bruce
Jane Rees
Lin Johnson
David Fairclough
Paul C.Dyer
Ann Jones
Barry Faulkner
Richie (sign the 'With-Profits' petition also)
Justin Meadows
david thomas
gary webber
Elaine Altuccini (petitions.pm.gov.uk/Work-bullying
Wendy Hall
Neil Hamilton
Mrs Amanda Arkell
Mrs Vicki Farthing
addy purnell
julia allen
Sarah Murtagh
Sandra Berry
Christopher Hines
REnata Rinaldini
anthony Scott-Norman
Joanne Currey
Seamus McDermott
Ms Malik
sarah phillips
David Evans
Catherine White
Connor Paul Wallace
Andy Slack
Mark Collyer
Claire Cummings
mike neary
Mike Jones
Kasia Raszewska
Jenny Dixon
Paul Woods
John McDermott
Anne Greagsby
Alex Huxley
Louise Davies
Pamela Harris
Julie Bregazzi
Fran Blaxland
Bill van Taack
Patricia Brown
a feeley
Akhtar Ayaz
Lynn Kidwell
Matthew Finnegan
Lisa-Marie Brown
sue harvey
Phil Price
John Waters
Tori Blare

Friday, 25 July 2008






As usual all credit goes to the Daily Post for the story.

Future in the balance for senior council officials

Jul 25 2008 by David Bartlett, Liverpool Daily Post

THE two most senior officials at Liverpool City Council will today come under pressure as the future of their jobs is discussed by a powerful panel.

Chief executive Colin Hilton faces a call for his suspension from Labour leader Joe Anderson over alleged failings.

While finance and legal executive director Phil Halsall faces the deletion of his post and therefore possible redundancy.

Both matters will be presented to the council’s appointments and disciplinary panel this morning.

The proposal to delete the executive director for finance and legal position forms part of a restructure of the council’s executive management team by the chief executive.

The Daily Post understands Mr Hilton is also proposing to cancel the post of executive director of culture, media, and sport which fell vacant in January with the departure of Jason Harborow, who also had the dual role of chief executive of Liverpool Culture Company.

The plan, as described to the Daily Post, would see Mr Hilton take on some of Mr Halsall’s financial responsibilities, with a more junior member of staff taking up other duties.

Mr Hilton’s proposal to scrap Mr Halsall’s position came out of a review following the council being labelled the worst in the country, and is designed to give the chief executive greater management responsibility over financial affairs.

However, the idea to get rid of the post, which has its roots in the historic role of city treasurer, has caused some disquiet among sections of the council.
Last night, a senior source said: “I am surprised at the proposals which would consolidate enormous power in one person.

“It would make the chief executive more powerful than the leader of the council, and even a directly elected mayor.

“I would question the logic of getting rid of this position at one of the most trying times for the council in financial terms.”

Mr Halsall, who joined the council in 2000 from South Ribble which cov- ers Leyland and central Lancashire, last night declined to comment.

The Daily Post understands that any decision made today would have to be ratified by the full council before taking effect.

Meanwhile, the panel will make a decision on whether to sanction further investigation into Cllr Anderson’s complaints about Mr Hilton.

The complaints relate to an alleged failure to take action over two internal investigations.

The first was into the leaking of information to the Liverpool Evil Cabal blogsite, and the second was into the leaking of the medical condition of Mr Harborow.

A third complaint relates to the monitoring of Cllr Anderson’s telephone records, which he claims was authorised by Mr Hilton.





Council leader Warren Bradley said that some individual councillors’ behaviour was “appalling” and not fitting of a democratic society.




Roger: This is not a good report for us is it Warren?
Fireman:Well Roger we’ve got to put it into perspective really haven’t we and remember where Liverpool was and that’s not thinking back 10 years. Liverpool has come an awful long way. The people of Liverpool were asking for lower Council Tax and the Liberal Democrats have delivered that and they also wanted better services and you look at the services that are now delivered by Liverpool City Council. If we look at the most vulnerable either elderly or the Children’s Services the social care we are now delivering at a level that Liverpool has never delivered before. We also look at the bread and butter your schools, your sports centres, your libraries, One Stop Shops in communities, our parks, we’ve got 13 green flag parks. It’s like a new home to me when you get an old dilapidated derelict building you’ve got to bring it up to a standard and I think Liverpool City Council under the Liberal Democrats have certainly done that and I am certain if we did a survey of people in the City do you want Liverpool City Council to sit on £20m worth of reserves or do you want the City Council delivering front line services that affect the most vulnerable and people’s lives in the City. I think that they would vote with their feet and say that we support the policies of Liverpool City Council. We’ve got to look at the financial regulations put in by Government and if you want my opinion about this Roger it is purely political.
Roger: Well come on, you know the Audit Commission is not a political body
Fireman: Well with respect Roger and I would beg to differ on that
Roger: Well how can it be a political, it’s an independent organisation?
Fireman: We can say everything is independent to a certain extent but you know you look at what we’ve got at the moment in Liverpool and we’re delivering top quality services.
Roger: But the problem with this is that you’ve got an overall score rating of 2 which was adequate performance into 05, overall score in 06 was 2 which is adequate performance.
This year it is down to 1 below minimum requirements inadequate performance.
Fireman: Based around financial regulations…
Roger: Yes I’m talking about the financial…..
Fireman: Laid down by government. I mean that’s what you’ve got to remember. Don’t try and muddy the waters and say oh this is about Liverpool City Council and their overall performance. It’s not. You look at the issue that we’ve done about achievements. Liverpool scoring 3-4 on achievement at the moment through the Audit Commission.
Roger: I didn’t know that.
(EDs: Pitiful, just pitiful.)
Fireman: And we do seem to always go to the negatives when we’re looking for something like this.
Roger: The District Auditor was pretty negative about you wasn’t he and…
Fireman: No, I have got to say Roger I would love to have £50m in reserves. I would also love not to have to put additions of £7m into adult social care and £2-3m into children’s social care. The facts are we have got to do that because of the pressures that are on Liverpool at the moment.
Roger: So are other Councils….
Fireman: I’m not willing as Leader of this Council to take away care to the most vulnerable to allow it to sit in reserve. I am not willing to do that and I will go to the stake on that the people of the City. Liverpool now is only one of a handful of Councils up and down the country that is providing moderate care to the most vulnerable people in the City. Now to give people an idea of what moderate care is that is home care. These people who’ve got no family to support them and require a visit in the morning or a visit in the evening to make sure they’re ok to help them to take the pills, to make sure that they’ve got the food. Most Councils up and down this country have removed that care. Liverpool City Council is still allowing our most vulnerable people our sort of care. Now is that wrong, is that wrong?
Roger: Now no one would argue that’s wrong but everyone. But many people are affected by housing. Housing is really poor isn’t it. I mean you are so poor you’ve had to hand it over to a different group to run it.
Fireman: Well with respect Roger, with respect, you’ve got to know what the Housing Corporation have done and in partnership with the Government again it’s easy to say it’s the Council, in partnership with the Government we’ve tackled head on through the Pathfinder areas of the inner core of the City some of the housing inefficiencies of the City. That hasn’t happened over the last five years that’s happened over 30 or 40 years. The problems in Norris Green in housing were prevalent 30 or 40 years ago and weren’t tackled. As an Authority we’ve challenged what wasn’t tackled and we’ve challenged it head on and I opened a couple of weeks ago with Flo Clucas and Marilyn Fielding with Cobalt Housing the first phase of Norris Green. We’ve transformed that area and its got houses for sale and social housing in Norris Green that people are seeking to live in now. We’ve got in a core Edge Hill, Kensington, Kirkdale the same issues that have been there for 30 or 40 years that we’re tackling now hand in hand with the Government. I’m not taking the credit for it and the Government isn’t. We’ve got a schools’ programme that is second to none. Liverpool’s young people are now achieving at the national average. I want it higher than national average to give new opportunity but again I’ll say I’m not going to suit accountants’ financial regulations in London and leave £millions sitting in reserve while we have still got the challenges Liverpool has got and I think people you know.
Roger: Do you think it was a mistake to keep Council Tax down or freeze it over the past few years?
Fireman: Well isn’t it ironic Roger how last week John Healey said how Liverpool is charging £101 a head...
Roger: Because its inefficiencies….
Fireman: Well we have taken £150m worth of inefficiencies out of our budget over the last 10 years. We’ve kept Council tax down which is exactly what Government policy is and is exactly what John Healey is saying. Councillor Joe Anderson is saying something completely different to the people of Liverpool that he will put taxes up to build reserves to put in reserve well again this administration this Lib Dem administration is not going to tax for the sake of taxing to leave money sitting in reserve. We will build up the reserves over a period of years and then we will be able to tackle some of the other issues that we’ve got to do. We recognise the health inequalities. To improve health inequalities we’ve got to have a real stable economy offering real opportunity and raising the aspirations in them poorer communities. You cannot do that leaving millions and millions of pounds laying in reserves and this administration will continue the robust financial management that we’ve done. We’ll carry on delivering…
Roger: If it was that robust we wouldn’t have this problem of £20m overdrawn on Capital of Culture.
Fireman: Roger, lets put things into hindsight. We are still delivering front line services. We are still…
Roger: It’s about £20m overall that we’re short this year – now that’s not robust management
Fireman: But Roger we are going through a budget setting process. Every Local Authority up and down the country is in the same process as us. I remember reading about Wirral being £50m short. Other Local Authorities. I meet the core city leaders who are £40-£50m short exactly the same as Liverpool . And let’s not forget I haven’t come on here to knock the Government I’ve come on here to say that I believe we’ve got a robust financial programme in place that is going to deal with the shortfall. We’ve delivered year on year but I’ll say again I am not going to allow millions and millions of pounds to lay in reserve. Cut front line services to the most vulnerable and then say that’s acceptable. Nor as Leader of this Council am I going to allow Council Tax to go through the roof again which will drive the inability to bring further investment into this City. While the Lib Dems have been in control we’ve brought Council Tax down, we’ve brought renewed confidence and we’ve brought real investment that will bring opportunities to the most vulnerable and I think that is the most important and I think the people of this City will stand full square with us on that. I’m proud of what we’ve delivered in this City over the last 10 years and Capital of Culture is part of that."