An employment tribunal has found that a former Barchester deputy care home manager accused of verbally abusing a vulnerable resident was unfairly dismissed.
Carol Streener was awarded £11,000 after the tribunal found that the investigation into charges against her lacked “any objectivity or rigour”. The tribunal’s judge said the investigation had failed to interview the resident at Woodhorn Park Care Home in Ashington who made the initial complaint that was lodged on 11 June 2018, People Management Magazine reported.
The tribunal heard the allegation that Ms Streener, who became deputy manager at the home in 2012, had attended a resident’s room after noticing an unpleasant smell.
An eye witness said Ms Streener had asked the resident if she had had an accident, which she denied. The former deputy manager was then heard asking the resident if she would like to have a bath, which the resident refused. At this, the witness alleged Ms Streener told the resident to “stay in her own shit”.
During the investigation into the incident, Ms Streener accepted the conversation had taken place but denied using the word ‘shit’.
The tribunal ruled she had been unfairly dismissed as the investigation “fell outside the band of a reasonable investigation of a reasonable employer”.
A Barchester spokesperson said: “Our commitment is to the safety and wellbeing of our residents and this is reflected in everything we do. This dismissal was in relation to the treatment of a resident and as such we took robust action in order to protect the vulnerable residents in our care.”