Dismissal of social worker whistleblower was ‘fair’

The social worker at the centre of a controversy over
whistleblowing has lost his case for unfair dismissal,
writes Alex Dobson.

Charles Faber’s suspension and subsequent dismissal
sparked a one-day strike in the Welsh capital earlier this year,
following claims that he was being victimised for highlighting his
fears over the safety of vulnerable children cared for by Cardiff

But an employment tribunal has decided unanimously, that
Faber’s dismissal was fair.

Cardiff council has always maintained that he was sacked because
of financial mismanagement.

The tribunal ruling says: “Their decision that this amounted to
gross misconduct was within the band of reasonable responses, and
that they operated a fair procedure. Accordingly we find that the
applicant was not unfairly dismissed.”

Deputy mayor Christine Priday said the council had maintained
throughout that Faber was dismissed for gross mismanagement and
not, as he alleged, for whistleblowing.

“I am very pleased that the tribunal found the council acted in
a responsible way and followed all the correct procedures”, she

Faber said the decision sends a clear message to social workers
that it is dangerous to speak out if they have real concerns over
children’s welfare.

“My real worry is that all frontline staff will now even feel
inhibited about telling their managers about their concerns over
children,” he said.

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