I am writing to you today to share copies of
both the full and summary reports into bullying and harassment
within SECAmb that the Trust commissioned from Professor Duncan
& Harassment at SECAmb NHS Foundation Trust: An Independent
& Harassment at SECAmb NHS Foundation Trust: A report of
key findings to staff
These will be published on our website later
on today and are likely to be the subject of media coverage.
I wanted to begin by thanking all of those
staff who have contributed to this report through focus groups, by
completing the survey or by contacting Professor Lewis directly. I
know that, for some, this will have taken real courage – thank you
for being brave enough to come forward.
I hope anyone who contributed is also
reassured that Professor Lewis has respected the anonymity of those
who participated, whilst producing a full, detailed and independent
report. We are publishing the reports exactly as received from
I am sure that you will all agree that the
reports do not make for comfortable reading for anyone. I am truly
disappointed and upset that so many of our staff have experienced
bullying and disrespectful behaviour in the workplace.
I want to be very clear that the behaviours
described in the report are completely unacceptable. They will not
be tolerated, in any sense and at any level, moving forward. The
Board, including our Chairman Richard Foster, also share this
Where appropriate, the Trust is already taking
action through our own internal processes but the issues identified
run far deeper and are broader than just a few individuals. What we
need to build, by working together, is a very different workplace,
where all staff will be supported and where poor behaviours will
not be tolerated. We have already started work in a number of
areas, as part of the Trust’s Recovery Plan but there is obviously
more we need to do.
In the report, Professor Lewis makes a number
of recommendations that the Trust should take to address the issues
specifically identified through his research.
These seem sensible to me but I am very keen
that, having identified the issues, staff also help to define the
solutions and we build our action plan from the ground up.
Starting during the week commencing
14th August, sessions will be held at multiple
locations, over a four-week period, to allow staff the opportunity
to suggest ways in which we can build a better workplace. These
sessions will be supported by myself and by other Exec Directors
and are currently being organised by the Staff Engagement team.
Times and locations for these sessions will follow shortly, so
please watch out for these locally and in the Bulletin and on the
The feedback from these sessions will feed
directly into our action plan, which I would like to see drafted by
the end of September 2017, although it may take a little longer if
we get lots of feedback from staff. It’s important that we start to
act promptly but also that we get it right.
I am also aware that reading this report may
affect people in different ways and that some staff may need some
support as a result or may want to raise further concerns. This page on the Intranet details the support
that is available.
I would like to end by thanking, once again,
all those who have contributed to this. Although difficult to read,
I firmly believe that this report is the first step to us building
a good and supportive working environment.