There must be zero tolerance of bullying - Beattie
Sinn Féin Party Group leader on Belfast City Council Ciaran Beattie has called for political parties to adopt a zero tolerance approach on bullying after a motion to establish an independent commission to examine allegations of bullying in the council was voted down this evening.
Speaking Councillor Beattie said:
"Over the course of recent months, several members of Belfast City Council staff have contacted myself and other Sinn Féin representatives concerning allegations of bullying from political parties and councillors.
“These allegations of bullying are extremely worrying and it is particularly concerning that some staff have claimed they are fearful of reporting bullying incidents because of the environment which they work.
“Everyone in society has a fundamental right to go to work in a safe and friendly environment. The right to live and work free from harassment is the bedrock of democratic society and a right which must protected.
“As political leaders in this city, we have a duty of care to our Council staff and to ensure that they have maximum support should they have any grievances in relation to their work.
“It is a matter of grave concern that some political parties on Belfast City Council voted against establishing an independent commission to examine allegation of bullying in this council.
“The rejection of this motion is shameful and lets workers down.
“No one has anything to fear from an independent commission which sets out to ensure maximum protection for workers with grievances.
“Sinn Féin will continue to do all that we can to support workers.”