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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Two year warning for charity worker who bullied and belittled staff

 

Staff were targeted for using wrong grammar and making spelling mistakes

A former manager at a Scottish veterans charity has been sanctioned with a two year warning for bullying staff members.

An investigation by the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) found that Rosemary McLaughlin, a former outreach manager for Sight Scotland Veterans, displayed a pattern of “belittling and bullying behaviour” over a period of 10 years.

Examples included pulling a colleague up in the middle of a team meeting to denigrate her comma usage and targeting a staff member for spelling mistakes in a report.

At a hearing hosted by the SSSC, officials heard how McLaughlin picked on a number of colleagues, often belittling them to their face or in front of other workers.

On one occasion, she left a voicemail on the phone of a second worker making fun of his profile picture on a work account.

The message was intended for someone else.

One worker had been left feeling "unsupported and bullied" as a result of her behaviour - spelled out across nine separate allegations from 2019.

McLaughlin also delayed or ignored co-workers' requests for financial funding for the blind veterans they worked with, delaying access to essential support.

She also dumped four years of appraisals on a third junior in one go - and wrote in a later report that he was late in filing paperwork, when the delays were down to her signing it off.

In its summary, the SSSC said: "The behaviour had an impact on service users as it resulted in delays to them receiving equipment they had asked for and required.

"The behaviour also negatively impacted your colleagues as they felt disrespected by you, belittled and bullied.

"While on their own the allegations aren’t at the most serious end of the scale it is the ten-year period that causes concern and leads to a finding of misconduct."

McLaughlin left SSV in 2020, and did not dispute the allegations when they were presented to her by the watchdog.

A spokesperson for Sight Scotland Veterans said: “We take any allegations of staff misconduct extremely seriously.

"The organisation has policies and procedures in place to manage any concerns raised.

"Unfortunately, due to confidentiality reasons, we are unable to comment on individual circumstances.”

 

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