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A Really Rotten Borough
latest update 12 February 2010

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Email from Natasha Eubank to Cllr Paula Southwood

The following email has been made available to this site by Natasha Eubank.

-----Original Message-----
From: natashaeubank@xxxxxxxx
Sent: Mon, Oct 12, 2009 9:01 am
Subject: ARMC 'Special Meeting' 23rd September Minutes

Councillor Southwood,

Having just read the minutes of the special ARMC meeting of the 23rd September, I felt compelled to write to you.

I was in attendance at this meeting, or at least I thought I was. Judging by the contents of the minutes I must have been in some form of temporary fugue state. As the contents of those minutes bear no resemblance on any level, to my recollection of the evenings proceedings.

I have no doubt that you have already been contacted by those who also feel strongly about this matter, highlighting the stark omissions of said minutes. (In much the same way that I have no doubt that Mr. Delaps work received the most personal attention, much more so than normal, of Mr. Norman) I will therefore not reiterate the discrepancies.

My comments are of a more empirical nature.

I find it incomprehensible that, even now, a number of Chief Officers and Councillors, you included, are persisting in compounding the already-catastrophic damage that this situation has wrought. It is precisely this high-handedness and arrogance which has led to this most heinous of situations.

The majority of Councillors have shown nothing but contempt, in their treatment of us. The cover-up; the lifting of the suspension of Noone and Fowler; the disgraceful IA report, the dubious commissioning of the independent investigation, the complete inability to take any decisive restorative action, the positively supernatural convenience of the appearance of the 1997 Committee report.

And now, now we get minutes, minutes that have been sanitised to such an extent that Herr Josef Goebbels (Propaganda Minister for the Third Reich, in case the reference was missed) would glow with pride.

For every second that passes in which the Councillors take no decisive, objective and final action over this matter (and that includes, but is necessarily limited to; the dismissal of Maura Noone and Mike Fowler and the reimbursement, in an appropriate form, of the monies taken from the most vulnerable amongst us, backdated to 1997) you make a mockery of the trust we have put in you as elected members.

For every minute that elapses where you fail to act, you prove that, as a body of people, you are more willing to smother and stifle an unpleasant and embarrassing truth, rather than put it right.

It’s all too easy, isn’t it? It’s all too easy when the victims of this overcharging are simply represented as quantities in committee briefings. If you can’t put a face to a name, then it doesn’t matter, does it?

And to think, these are the most vulnerable, the most socially excluded amongst us.

You sicken me.

And then, then the Whistleblower.

Permit me to be presumptuous. By reinstating Mrs. Noone and Mr. Fowler you are, in effect, demonstrating your support for two individuals who, and let us call a spade a spade, were more willing to persecute an employee, rather than admit that they are responsible for committing, what is effectively, institutional financial abuse against people with learning disabilities.

If that does not appeal to your moral values, then let me appeal to your ego.

They, by intending to get approval of a policy during the ‘political downtime’ (taken from the email transcripts on clearly do not regard you as anything more than ‘head-nodders’. People who do not have the ability or intelligence to understand what is written down in front of them.

Perhaps that might elicit a more significant response?

Either way, these two people, who have inflicted the most despicable damage on, people with learning disabilities, a man whose only goals was to stop the financial abuse of said people and the reputation of Wirral Council, are people you have shown you allegiance to.

Perhaps understandingly, I question your character judging abilities.

I have neglected to mention Mr. Webb’s complicity in the actions of Noone and Fowler. Whilst I appreciate that Mr. Webb was not in post as Director until comparatively recently, he has also shown himself to consider that the cover-up of financial abuse by his senior officers and the persecution of an duty-bound employee are more palatable actions than telling the truth is.

And these are the people who have been charged with the responsibility of looking after Wirrals most vulnerable people.

Inspiring, isn’t it?

Mr. Norman did not consider that a police investigation into the actions of DASS, in this instance was appropriate. He took, what seemed to be about 2 nanoseconds, before providing us with his considered response. This was accepted by you wholesale, in an equally embarrassingly short span of time.

Let me draw you to the CPS guidelines for quantifying the act of misconduct in a public office.

The elements of misconduct in public office are:

a) A public officer acting as such.

b) Wilfully neglects to perform his duty and/or wilfully misconducts himself.

c) To such a degree as to amount to an abuse of the public's trust in the office holder.

d) Without reasonable excuse or justification.

John Webb, Maura Noone and Mike Fowler have abused the public trust.

For that matter, you also have abused the public’s trust.

Put this right.

Put this right, otherwise it will be this that defines your political career. Nothing else. No good that you might have done, or will do, for the residents of Wirral will be remembered. It will be this. And only this.

Put this right.

And don’t even get me started about a particular external supported-living provider.

You’re in for a busy time.

Natasha Eubank

© Reproduced with kind permission of Natasha Eubank.

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