A social work manager who tried to cover up her partner’s drink-driving by lying to the police has failed in an appeal against her suspension.
Kathleen Honour was suspended from the social care register for two years in March after giving a false statement to the police about a car accident in 2007 involving her partner.
She told officers she had been driving, not her partner, who had been drinking alcohol and was worried he may have been over the legal limit.
The approved mental health professional, who worked for Northamptonshire Council at the time, maintained her account the following day when told to produce documents at a police station and failed to tell her employer what had happened.
Honour was convicted of perverting the course of justice at Northampton Crown Court in September 2009, following the incident which occurred in November 2007.
She was ordered to carry out 120 hours of unpaid work and received a five-month prison sentence, suspended for two years. She left her post after reaching a compromise agreement with bosses at Northamptonshire Council in 2009.
Honour appealed to the first-tier tribunal after receiving a two-year suspension at a General Social Care Council conduct hearing in March this year.
She argued that the sanction was “unnecessarily punitive” and suggested the suspension should have lasted for six months, not two years.
Her previous record of 26 years’ service to the profession was unblemished, she said, and her actions regarding the drink-driving incident had been out of character.
However, the tribunal took into account that Honour, who had previously managed a team of 21 staff, had not only lied to the police but failed to report her conviction to the GSCC.
Despite some excellent character references, Judge John Burrow found “she had acted in a deceptive manner over a considerable period of time in this instance”.
“In conclusion we unanimously agreed the sanction of two years suspension imposed by the conduct committee was proportionate, fair and necessary.”
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