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MANDELSON JIBE PROMPTS ACTION

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A Unison representative is being taken before a disciplinary hearing for comparing a personnel officer to Peter Man...
A Unison representative is being taken before a disciplinary hearing for comparing a personnel officer to Peter Mandelson.

Susan Rae, an economic development officer at Scottish Borders Council, sent an e-mail to her colleagues asking if head of personnel Diane Hunter had been taking lessons from Peter Mandelson in her attempts to sell a flexitime package.

As one of four allegations of misconduct this was said to be 'likely to cause personal offence to any reasonable person'. Ms Rae is accused of sending unauthorised messages via the council's electronic mail system to tell colleagues about her union's efforts to have flexitime introduced.

Head of personnel Diane Hunter e-mailed staff last month about the flexitime arrangements. Ms Rae then distributed her own e-mail arguing that flexitime should be introduced without any other conditions being attached. 'What is the big problem with resolving the flexitime issue now and then looking at them separately,' her e-mail read. 'Has Ms Hunter been taking lessons from Peter Mandelson? If someone told you the world was actually flat would that actually make it so?'

Unison branch secretary John Shaw said that if the disciplinary hearing against Ms Rae proceeded it would be defended but that the flexitime issue had now been resolved.
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