Hello Adrian and Jenny
I have a serious proposal for you that should put to bed a very important part of the concerns of a large group of what you call complainants and I call victims of bullying at CIT.
I have found the lack of information offered to us throughout this whole process absolutely disgraceful and totally disrespectful. It is totally contrary to what both CIT and Andrew Kefford's office offered us through initial meetings (with Andrew) the media, emails to current staff at CIT and in the ACT Legislative Assembly.
It seems clear that the idea of getting my job back was always pie in the sky - and I no longer particularly care about that as I have other satisfying work and projects in place. So this suggestion is not all about me - I would be selfish to not wish to be assured that things are in place to make sure that current and future staff and students of CIT are protected by proper processes when bullying and unprofessional conduct does occur.
I'd like to remind you that my and many other's experience of bullying was not from a colleague but from an immediate manager and it was when we tried to get help, that some higher management turned very nasty, protecting the bully at every turn. I think it is the disrespect and down right nastiness of the way CIT dealt with complaints particularly from casual teachers that was most appalling. I hope that as well as polices and procedures, CIT find a way to foster respectful attitudes from management to lower staff. After all, casual or contract, level 1 Teacher or Centre Director, we were all colleagues and that should be recognised and nurtured - I can't for the life of me think why any workplace would want it any other way!
As I have said elsewhere and often, we have heard assurances that new polices and procedures are in place but are expected to take your word on it. That is just not good enough considering the dishonest way CIT has dealt with all of us in the past.
My proposal is for a meeting where a presentation is given that outlines and shows proof ... links on screen to the staff site etc, of new policies and the performance management structure in particular. In addition, the anti bullying polices and procedures. This would go a long way to convincing myself and others that concrete changes are in place and hopefully these changes will bring in a kinder and more respectful working environment.
I imagine you will be bristling as you read this - and therein lies the problem. Whenever you have been respectfully approached, or angrily approached - you have reacted in the same way - you have the power and you dislike any 'underling' asking for or telling you anything.
Well, as a former and loyal employee badly hurt by lack of decent process in the past, I am asking that you put that natural bristling inclination aside and find a way to facilitate such a meeting.
An important point is that I do think that the meeting would require a chair who is independent of CIT and Andrew Kefford's office and one that all parties would feel comfortable with.
What do you think my chances are? Someone just said to me "I think you are pissing in a very stiff wind" ... they have never engaged why would they now?" ... Yes, I guess so. Anyhow, worth a try. If they don't response then they were never genuine about apologising to victims, only about kicking a fine cover of dirt over the past and moving on ... L