A former social worker last week failed in his attempt to sue
Gloucestershire Council for constructive dismissal.
Cliff Cole, of Cinderford, claimed in a two-day employment tribunal
in Bristol that bosses had conducted a witch-hunt against him after
he spoke out about problems within the department.
Cole, who worked in child protection, told the hearing that his
department had been beset by problems following a restructuring of
services in July 2002.
Problems with the telephone system had been so bad that in some
cases professionals, including the police and teachers, had been
unable to contact a team member for up to two hours, Cole claimed.
Cole, who worked for the council for six years, claimed his
superiors deliberately escalated and failed to investigate
complaints made against him after he voiced these concerns.
But tribunal chair Clive Toomer said the bench “unanimously
rejected” the suggestion that managers had acted in bad faith in
their handling of complaints.
A spokesperson for the council welcomed the outcome as a
reinforcement of the professionalism of its staff.