Whistleblower sacked by council

By Danielle Nicholson danielle.nicholson@apn.co.nz -
2 comments
Allan Halse has been dismissed from his role at Hamilton City Council.
Allan Halse has been dismissed from his role at Hamilton City Council.

The man who blew the whistle on a culture of bullying and harassment at Hamilton City Council was sacked yesterday and has today learned that he is no longer a PSA union delegate.

Hamilton City Council chief executive Barry Harris confirmed Allan Halse had been "dismissed following an investigation over a period of time".

Mr Harris said he was not able to discuss the details of the investigation.

Hamilton News understands investigations centred around allegations that Mr Halse - who was council's chief union delegate - had provided information to the media without authorisation, had breached council's policy on protected disclosures, and that he had published derogatory statements about council on an internet site.

"That's where it's concluded from my point of view," Mr Harris said. "He obviously has options he can pursue, but as far as we are concerned that's the end of the matter.''

PSA national secretary Brenda Pilott was reluctant to comment on the situation but confirmed Mr Halse was no longer a PSA delegate. "I don't have any comment to make on that. We weren't involved in that dismissal. He elected to have his own representation. We've decided to make no comment on his dismissal. You can't be a delegate if you don't work somewhere. To an extent that he is no longer an employee...as a non-employee you can't be a delegate."

Councillor Dave Macpherson is angry at the way he says Mr Halse's case has been handled. "I said back when Allan was suspended that council management intended to dismiss him. I've been proved right.

"In my opinion, the dismissal was pre-meditated, is unjustified, and is designed to further cover up many of council's staffing problems. I believe the CEO's actions in this matter will bring the Council into further disrepute, and are reprehensible."

Mr Macpherson said he's willing to be a witness on Mr Halse's behalf should the case go to the Employment Relations Authority.

Mr Harris said council is making headway around health and safety initiatives at the organisation.

"I've always maintained we've put a lot of effort into it. We're making significant progress, working with our unions and our people. There's still a way to go but I personally believe we're making good progress."

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