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Stoke faces two-pronged legal challenge

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A former chief executive dismissed while recovering from cancer is to take her former employer to court

Jeanette McGarry has launched a High Court libel claim against Stoke-on-Trent City Council and initiated a separate employment tribunal for alleged sexual and disability discrimination.

Ms McGarry, a former chief executive of East Staffordshire BC, was diagnosed with cancer in the Autumn of 2009, a few months after starting work as the council’s director of housing, environmental and neighbourhood services.

In April this year she was sent a dismissal notice and a press statement from chief executive John van de Laarschot said “the city council has been compassionate in relation to Mrs McGarry’s recent illness” and stated that the decision was “based on concerns around her performance, conduct and behaviour”.

Neither Ms McGarry nor the council wished to comment.

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