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  1. In Topic: Harassment Law And Acc

    10 September 2019 - 03:00 PM


    Exclusive: Team leaders at Aviation Security Services accused of allowing people to board flights with illegal items

    Exclusive: Team leaders at Aviation Security Services accused of allowing people to board flights with illegal items
    Michael Morrah


    Credits: Getty Images.

    Newshub can reveal that the Civil Aviation Authority boss has ordered a QC to investigate serious allegations of bullying, harassment and ineffective leadership at the Aviation Security Service.

    Graeme Harris, the CAA's chief executive, has been approached by "multiple staff" who have made specific allegations against people, "predominantly in leadership roles".

    Civil Aviation Authority chair Nigel Gould resigns at Transport Minister Phil Twyford's request
    'Secrecy and cover-up': Explosive allegations from within the Civil Aviation Authority
    'Huge issues': Father of pilot killed in Fox Glacier helicopter crash calls for tougher scrutiny of regulator

    Most allegations relate to Aviation Security's Wellington operation and the Explosive Detector Dog Unit.

    Significantly, Harris says other allegations suggest "systemic and broad-ranging issues" including "a culture of fear" where people are scared "they will be targeted" if they speak up.

    In an email to staff obtained by Newshub, Harris says he's appointed QC David Laurenson to investigate the "serious" allegations.

    They include:

    Bullying and inappropriate behaviour mainly by people who hold top positions
    Alleged ineffective leadership
    Bias in appointment processes
    Unethical procurement practices

    If you have more information, email Michael Morrah confidentially at [email protected]

    "We have been made aware by members that there are issues with bullying and other inappropriate behaviour within Avsec," says Glenn Barclay, Public Service Association general secretary.

    The majority of specific allegations against leaders relate to the Detector Dog Unit, and Wellington's Aviation Security operation.

    A former worker from the Wellington team, who made multiple complaints of bullying and harassment, says it has been ignored for years.

    "It is absolutely being spearheaded by team leaders - they will pick on individuals that raise concerns because they're pegged as problem children," says the former Acsec officer.

    Harris' email states that other allegations suggest "systemic" problems, including a "culture of fear of coming forward".

    The investigation will look at the working environment at airports across the country.

    "The only thing that happens when you speak up is you start to get targeted," the former worker says.

    "I've witnessed bullying, I've witnessed inappropriate touching, I've seen people not following procedure."

    When it comes to not following procedures, the allegations are serious - like allowing passengers to carry illegal items like knives with a blade longer than 6cm on to flights, just so team leaders can avoid doing paperwork.

    "I've witnessed team leaders allowing longer knives through the checkpoints, injurious substances, allowing dangerous goods that should not be going on planes," the former worker says.

    The allegations of bullying, harassment and poor management mirror concerns raised by CAA whistleblowers as part of an earlier Newshub investigation.

    They spoke of serious complaints being ignored, calling it "a culture of secrecy and cover-up".

    The two Government agencies in charge of keeping kiwis safe in the skies are facing turbulence and serious scrutiny.

    The Transport Minister has already ordered an independent investigation into the culture at the CAA.

    Who exactly will be involved in the review of culture at CAA will be announced shortly, but the Minister has told Newshub today it will include a barrister and a consulting firm.

    The new investigation into the Aviation headed by QC David Laurenson is separate, and Laurenson will report directly to Graeme Harris.

    Asked about claims of dangerous goods being allowed on planes, the CAA would not comment except to say "any allegations involving breaches of security standards would certainly be within the scope of the investigation".

    AVSEC general Manager, Mark Wheeler, told Newshub he's "committed to providing a positive work environment... where people can raise concerns in a safe and supported manner".

  2. In Topic: Harassment Law And Acc

    10 September 2019 - 02:51 PM


    Calls for Labour president to resign over handling of sexual assault allegation against staffer

    10 Sep, 2019 9:25am
    5 minutes to read
    Current Time 0:18
    Duration 1:50

    Nigel Haworth stuck to the position that he is 'bound by confidentiality' today as he repeatedly shut down questions about the ongoing process. Video / Boris Jancic
    NZ Herald

    There are calls for the Labour Party's president to resign over his handling of allegations of sexual assault against a staff member amid an investigation into the saga.

    Meanwhile, lawyers for the man at the centre of the accusations say they are "without foundation".

    The party has been rocked by allegations published in The Spinoff this week that a 19-year-volunteer was subjected to a prolonged sexual attack by a male Labour staffer in February 2018.

    The staffer was investigated by the party over complaints from seven different people earlier this year, but it concluded no disciplinary action was needed. Following complaints last month, the party has now asked a QC to review the investigation.
    Advertise with NZME.

    Labour says it did not investigate claims of sexual assault and that it was not the appropriate body to do so. The volunteer is reported to have said she had met with Labour president Nigel Haworth in 2018 and described the alleged attack to him, and in March 2019 told the investigating panel about it.

    An open letter to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Labour's major governing bodies is now calling for Haworth to resign over the matter.
    Jacinda Ardern on alleged sexual assault by a Labour staff member. Video / Mark Mitchell

    Posted online, the document says it has been written by the Labour Party, some complainants and other supporters.

    "We call on Nigel Haworth to formally resign as President of the Labour Party and to withdraw his candidacy for re-election at the November Conference," it reads in a list of eight demands.

    "All of us have watched in horror as this story has unfolded, as the survivors have been repeatedly re-traumatised, and as the Labour Party has run a shambles of a process."

    It also calls for a formal apology from Haworth, changes to the party's sexual harm prevention policy, training for all party members on sexual harassment prevention and for the staffer to be barred from the Parliamentary precinct.

    In a statement to the Herald, a lawyer for the staff member facing allegations said he had confirmed the claims were without foundation.

    "My client was the subject of inquiry, and that inquiry concluded that there was no case to answer," he said.

    "He now finds himself in the distressing situation of being subjected to a further inquiry. He has agreed to co-operate fully with that further inquiry, and given that this process is currently being conducted, I have advised my client that it is completely inappropriate for these matters to be litigated in the media."

    Ardern on Monday told media she had only learned the allegations against the staffer were of a sexual nature of that day and that the party had previously assured her they were not.

    She said she was deeply frustrated and concerned about the party's handling of the situation and the conflicting report, would not say she had confidence in Haworth, and said she would wait for the outcome of the QC's report.

    Ardern in a series of interviews on Tuesday morning again repeatedly refused to back the president.

    Asked by Newstalk ZB if she would sack Haworth, Ardern said if a report found the party hadn't dealt with the matter appropriately "or that there's been failures on his part, he would do what's in the best interests in the party and those involved".

    Haworth has declined repeated requests for comment.

    Ardern on Monday said the staffer had not been working at the Parliamentary precinct for about five weeks and would not return, at least, until the review was complete.

    In a statement, Parliament Speaker Trevor Mallard said no complaint had been made to Parliamentary Service - the man's employer - by anyone involved in the case, either.

    "I repeat my request for any individual who feels unsafe at work or when visiting to contact me or the general manager. Any further action requires a complaint," he said.

    • February, 2018: A Labour staffer - employed by Parliamentary Service - allegedly sexually assaults a 19-year-old Labour volunteer after a meeting at his house, according to The Spinoff.

    • March, 2018: Complaints emerge about Labour's handling of assault allegations at a Young Labour summer camp earlier in the year and the party launches a review.

    • April, 2018: Spurred by the review, the volunteer emails the lawyer leading a probe into the camp incident, Maria Berryman, alleging a "lower-level" 2017 incident involving the staffer but is told the review is looking in the camp issues first.

    • August, 2018: The volunteer meets with Labour Party president Nigel Haworth and tells him about the sexual assault, Stuff reports.

    • February, 2019: Labour's NZ Council orders an investigation into the complaints about the staffer from the volunteer and six other people.

    • March, 2019: The volunteer and the other complainants testify and, according to the Spinoff, the volunteer describes the alleged sexual assault.

    • July, 2019: The review emails the complainants telling them no disciplinary action will be taken.

    • July 12, 2019: Email from a third party sent to journalists raising concern for the complainants.

    • August 5: Reports emerge about allegations of "bullying, sexual harassment and sexual assault", and resignations from the party. Media are told the matters looked into do not involve sexual assaults.

    • August 15: The party announces it will let the complainants appeal.

    • September 9: A graphic description of an alleged sexual assault by the volunteer is published by The Spinoff.

    • September 10: In a statement, a lawyer for the staff says the allegations are without foundation.
  3. In Topic: Harassment Law And Acc

    10 September 2019 - 02:50 PM


    Labour assault, bullying claims: Everything you need to know

    33 minutes ago
    Anna Bracewell-Worrall


    Watch: Complainants say accused Labour staffer has been seen at Parliament since allegations. Credits: Newshub

    Newshub has been investigating allegations of sexual assault, harassment, intimidation and bullying against a Labour party staff member for the past two months.

    The story was first broken to the public by political editor Tova O'Brien five weeks ago.
    What are the allegations?

    Newshub first reported allegations including sexual assault, sexual harassment and bullying against a Labour Party staffer on 5 August.

    The alleged victims had taken complaints about the staffer to the Labour Party executive. The complaints were numerous enough for the party to launch an investigation, in which a panel heard testimony from interviewees.

    Labour volunteer details alleged sexual assault by senior staffer
    Jacinda Ardern 'deeply disappointed' in Labour's handling of allegations
    Exclusive: Labour forced to review investigation into bullying, sexual assault allegations against staffer

    Those who spoke out were frustrated and "retraumatised" by the complaints process. In July they'd been told despite the investigation into the staffer, no action would be taken against him.

    The Labour Party executive has been insisting there were no complaints of sexual assault but Newshub on Monday reported details of a complainant's testimony she claims was provided to the panel. In it, she describes struggling against the accused as he pulls down her pants and grabs her under her shirt.
    How many people made allegations against the staffer?

    Newshub has spoken to five of the seven people who made complaints about the Labour staffer.
    If allegations of sexual assault were reported five weeks ago, why are they in the news again now?

    Fresh news stories on Monday go into a level of detail of a sexual assault claim that was previously unreported.

    Newshub reporting up until Monday night had been focused on the complaints as a whole, rather than individual incidents. On Monday, O'Brien reported an account from one of the complainants, who said the staffer assaulted her for 10 to 20 minutes. She recounted struggling against his weight, while he used one of his elbows to push against her collar bone. His other hand went into her trousers.

    "I just remember how sharp his nails were," she said.

    At the Prime Minister's weekly post-Cabinet press conference, Jacinda Ardern said the first she'd heard of sexual assault claims against the staffer had been in the Spinoff that day.

    She said she'd been told the complaints were not sexual and on her Tuesday morning media rounds, did not express confidence in the party president Nigel Haworth, saying she would wait for an investigation into the process to wrap up.
    Who knew about the allegations?

    Because the allegations had been investigated by a Labour party panel over the course of nearly three months, when the first news story broke, a handful of MPs already knew at least some of the details.

    They included Labour Party leader Jacinda Ardern, Finance Minister Grant Robertson and two other Labour MPs.

    The key contention is currently who knew about the allegations of sexual assault and when. The complainant who spoke to Newshub on Monday said the panel was told during the investigation. Haworth was part of that panel, but has been insisting there was no complaint of sexual assault.
    How does the future look for the Labour Party president Nigel Haworth?

    An investigation into the complaints process was launched off the back of Newshub's first story. If that investigation finds there was a complaint of sexual assault and that it wasn't investigated or reported properly, then it's hard to see a situation in which Haworth wouldn't offer his resignation.
    Why did the complainants come forward to the party in the first place?

    Those who laid complaints did so after the party encouraged victims to come forward following allegations of groping at a Young Labour camp.

    They say they were concerned that young women joining the party could be harmed by the man at the centre of the allegations. They believed the party could deal with it and did not want to go to police.
    After going to the party, why did they speak to media?

    Alleged victims contacted Newshub after becoming frustrated with the party's processes. They had provided testimony to a panel of officials, including the party Secretary Nigel Haworth.

    One of the women who allege a sexual assault says notes taken during the interview were poor and failed to detail the assault.

    She says she read off a written testimony during the interview, and that the written testimony was provided to the panel. Newshub has seen the testimony and it details a sexual assault.

    The party continues to insist there were no complaints of sexual assault.
    What is Paula Bennett's involvement?

    The deputy leader of the Opposition is an unusual ally for the alleged victims of the Labour Party staffer. At least one of the complainants went to Bennett, hoping it would help resolve the case.

    August 2018: Labour Party president Nigel Haworth informed the staffer told a woman she was elected within the party because she "would be nice to sleep with".
    9 March, 2019: Complainants are interviewed by a panel
    21 May, 2019: Investigation wrapped up
    June, 2019: Complainants told of the outcome
    5 July, 2019: Labour party president emailed complainants to say no action would be taken
    5 August, 2019: Newshub breaks the story of investigation into bullying and sexual assault allegations against staffer
    August 8, 2019: National's Paula Bennett claims to have been contacted by a victim
    August 08, 2019: PM said she was advised none of the people who made a complaint to Labour about a party member currently work in any part of Parliament
    August 10, 2019: Decision taken by Labour to appoint a QC
    September 09, 2019: Labour staffer details alleged sexual assault by senior staffer
    September 09, 2019: PM says she is "deeply disappointed" in the party's handling of allegations and wasn't aware they were sexual in nature
    September 10, 2019: Labour president Nigel Haworth says sexual assault allegations were not brought to Labour Party investigation

  4. In Topic: Harassment Law And Acc

    10 September 2019 - 02:41 PM

    Old Boys and Old Girls networks is it that there has been "stonewalling"???

    Come on all those of you who know that unlawful behaviours including Phone hacking to obtain votes has gone on within the Labour Party, speak out about it.
    We know it's gone on for at least 19 years by those closely associated and within the Labour Party.

    Perhaps there's a very valid reason why these complainants have not gone to the Police to report things.

    Think back over the years who has done what where within Police Ranks, links to ACC & other industries, there's a wider picture in everything.

    Those who have covered their filth and think it's ok to abuse and harass vulnerable people must be held to account.

    Young Labour abuse victims barred from Parliament offices
    Andrea Vance and Alison Mau05:00, Sep 08 2019


    Current Time 0:06
    Duration Time 1:26

    Chris Skelton/STUFF
    NZ Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Labour party president Nigel Haworth address allegations of party youth camp sexual assaults.

    ​Labour's president Nigel Haworth barred complainants and witnesses in an alleged bullying and sexual harassment case from one of Parliament's main buildings.

    Leaked emails show Haworth and other senior officials instructed the women, all Labour party members, to stay away from the Labour party offices in Bowen House, where the man at the centre of their complaints works.

    One witness was ordered to stay away from the entire 22-storey office block, which houses Ministers, MPs and public servants.

    * Jacinda Ardern confirms Labour reviewing investigation into bullying, sexual harassment after fresh allegations
    * Labour accepts alcohol, sexual assault recommendations after camp incident
    * Victim slams Labour summer camp report
    * No heads to roll at Labour over youth camp allegations while review carried out
    * Labour youth camp trial: indecent assault charges withdrawn, accused pleads guilty to assault​
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern pictured with with party president Nigel Haworth.
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern pictured with with party president Nigel Haworth.

    Speaker Trevor Mallard, Parliament's gatekeeper, was not told of the direction and says it was inappropriate.

    The parliamentary staffer is the subject of a series of bullying, harassment and sexual assault claims. He was also barred from another building, where some of the women worked.

    In an email to complainants in July, Haworth, the party's top official since 2015, wrote: "there is a continuing need to maintain an appropriate degree of separation between you and [the subject of complaints]."

    Ten days later, general secretary Andre Anderson wrote asking a witness to stay away from Bowen House.

    "We acknowledge the stress that these matters are placing you all under and feel that maintaining a physical separation is an appropriate interim measure… as you are each making important contributions to the Party, we are hoping that this arrangement reduces any impact that the presence of one of the other parties may cause while these matters are being resolved."

    He added: "There may be other Party activities where you encounter each other, but where it would be both complicated and unfair to prescribe in advance who can and cannot attend. In these cases, we ask that you respect the fact that the other person may feel the need to leave."

    The man, who Stuff cannot identify for legal reasons, is employed in the Labour Leader's Office, a unit set up to help Labour MPs with the everyday business of Parliament.

    He is a public servant employed by Parliamentary Service, not the Labour party.

    The witness told Stuff that the women were unhappy with this decision and pointed out that they were required to attend work meetings in Bowen House.
    More from
    Andrea Vance • Senior Journalist
    [email protected]

    They were then told to contact the Labour party when they wished to visit, the witness said. The male staffer would also be informed when any of the women came to the building.

    A letter from assistant general secretary Dianna Lacy also reveals the Parliamentary Services staffer agreed not to access information at work about the women.

    Stuff has also learned three of the women were invited to a young Labour event, in the party's caucus room at Parliament, in late April, as the investigation was ongoing.

    When they arrived, the found the staffer had been assigned to meet and chaperone guests, giving access to the building using his swipe card.

    One of the complainants believed this "put young people directly in danger, especially his victims".

    Seven formal complaints were laid with the party and up to 12 people made general complaints about the staffer.

    Labour's ruling council agreed to investigate the claims of bullying and harassment in February and appointed three party members to investigate.
    Wellington's Bowen House looms over the Beehive.
    Hagen Hopkins
    Wellington's Bowen House looms over the Beehive.

    They were Simon Mitchell, a lawyer, Christchurch-based Tracey McLellan, who has previously worked for MPs Ruth Dyson and Megan Woods, and Honey Heemi, of Labour's Maori council.

    Interviews took place in March, and in June they delivered a report to the Council, which recommended no disciplinary action be taken. Council accepted that recommendation.

    The complainants were unsatisfied and began questioning Haworth, Lacey and Anderson about an appeals process.

    There was no right of appeal in Labour's constitution, but the party agreed to ask its solicitor, Hayden Wilson, of Kensington Swan, to undertake a review of "procedural matters". He would not re-investigate whether misconduct took place.

    It was then that Haworth asked the women to stay away from Bowen House.

    Some of the complainants decided to go public, sending an email to media outlets. An email from Anderson, on Jul 23rd, shows senior Labour figures were already aware of the allegations.

    These included: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, and her chief of staff Mike Munro, deputy chief of staff Raj Nahna, and chief press secretary Andrew Campbell.
    More from
    Alison Mau • Senior Journalist and #MeTooNZ Editor
    [email protected]

    Finance Minister Grant Robertson and MPs Kiritapu Allen and Paul Eagle were also in the loop, as well as union official and party Council member Paul Tolich and Wellington city councillor Fleur Fitzsimons, also on the Council.

    When the story hit news headlines, Ardern admitted the party had not handled the complaints well.

    Haworth promised new rules that would ensure serious allegations would be looked at by an independent expert. The seven complainants were invited to have their cases re-examined and given funding for legal advice.

    The allegations followed a scandal at a Labour youth camp in 2018. Last week, a 21-year-old man, who has interim name suppression, pleaded guilty to two charges of assault at the Waihi camp.

    The Crown withdrew indecent assault charges amending them to assault.

    Haworth refused to respond to a list of detailed questions from Stuff. He said: "Given these matters are now subject to appeal the Party won't be making any comment at this time."

    Mallard grants and restricts access to the parliamentary complex. He said: "The first point that I want to make is that I have repeatedly, through [Parliamentary Service's] general manager [Rafael Gonzalez-Montero], the relevant office and people who have raised the matter with me that I think either a Police complaint (if an offence is alleged to have occurred) or a complaint relating to employment if people feel unsafe, should be made.
    Nigel Haworth has been party president since 2015.
    Nigel Haworth has been party president since 2015.

    "That would give a basis for taking action. No such complaint has been made with the Parliamentary Service."

    He said no-one had asked him about restricting complainants' access to Bowen House. "If asked I would have indicated that I did not think such a suggestion/agreement was appropriate."

    In the last two years Parliament has been rocked by a series of bullying allegations. Following the damning Francis Report earlier this year, another employee was stood down over claims of sexual assault.

    Gonzalez-Montero confirmed no-one has complained to Parliamentary Service, which means they cannot formally investigate.

    The organisation was first told of the complaints to Labour on July 13 and was not approached during the course of the party's investigation.

    He was also unaware of the restrictions to access."Parliamentary Service was not aware of this and while we do not know the full details of the situation we do not believe this is an appropriate action," he said.

    Sunday Star Times

  5. In Topic: Harassment Law And Acc

    10 September 2019 - 02:32 PM

    Culture change perhaps not only needs to change amongt some within the likes of the Police force however until Police recieve appropriate training at Police college how to address Harassment in mianstream society there will be issues.

    Please folk, it's 22 years since The Harssment Act was introduced, you all need to learn that it's not a black & white law, it has many variances for many situations people may finds themselves in, including VULNERABLE Persons.

    Get your heads around it, it takes courage to report Sexual & other Harassment at the best of times, including where there are targets of Financial & Organized Crime by organized Criminals

    Take the time to sit down, listen to & comprehend chronological order, context and content in people's situations.

    Frankly we are disgusted and emabarrassed to learn that in it's 22 years of existence that the wider legal fraternity, incldung Police and Ministry of Justice Personal are still struggling with understanding this Law which is there & as intricate as it is a very good reason.

    It's NOT OK to go around and harass vulnerable people who have head injuries and their families, nor is it ok to stereotype people who have taken courage to ensure Law & Order and know exactly what they are talking about & have been through.

    Froth rises to the top in all manner of places.


    Bullying remains widespread in police: 'It just builds up and builds up'
    9 Sep, 2019 6:55am
    6 minutes to read
    Police officers spoken to said senior staff members led bullying culture, using positions of authority to make life difficult for those ranked beneath them. Photo / RNZ
    Police officers spoken to said senior staff members led bullying culture, using positions of authority to make life difficult for those ranked beneath them. Photo / RNZ

    By Ben Strang and Rebekah Parsons-King for RNZ

    Bullying remains widespread throughout the police little more than a decade after a commission of inquiry into the organisation's culture, victims say.

    In 2007, the Commission of Inquiry into Police Conduct, led by Dame Margaret Bazley, recommended wide changes to the police's handling of sexual assault complaints and wider organisational culture.

    However, it appears there remains a culture of bullying within New Zealand Police.

    RNZ has independently spoken to 21 police officers and staff members who have experienced or witnessed bullying. They are all from different parts of the organisation and different regions, and none work with or personally know each other.

    Each reported similar experiences of bullying.

    They said senior staff members led bullying culture, using positions of authority to make life difficult for those ranked beneath them.

    "I'd ... call it mental abuse," said one officer, who will remain nameless.

    "Snide remarks, snide comments, acting towards you in a certain way, ignoring you.

    "Coming in and speaking over you when you're having a conversation with someone [and] just dealing with you disrespectfully.

    "You wouldn't expect it, but it happens. I know it sounds minor, but when it's constant, it just builds up and builds up and builds up."

    He received a small payout after filing a personal grievance for bullying. A non-disclosure agreement was part of the process.

    Those who complained, specifically using the Speak Up hotline, said their complaints were sent straight to the people who had been bullying them, their superiors.

    Someone working in the police's IT department said it was for that reason people did not trust the Speak Up system.

    Another sergeant said because of the issues with Speak Up, most people never lodged a formal complaint.

    Figures released under the Official Information Act show in the year to February 2019, 74 complaints were lodged using Speak Up, 23 of which were for bullying.

    Another 22 were for attitude and language related reasons and 11 were for breach of policy. Harassment, discrimination, conflict of interest, breach of privacy and drugs and alcohol issues were also among the complaints.

    A person from the police's human resources said many of those complaints should be classed as bullying, but there was a conscious effort to remove the word from any complaints, specifically in case media asked for bullying numbers through the Official Information Act.

    "We're advised to use any word we can, other than the word bullying. Sometimes you have to get really creative."
    What is it like to be bullied in the police?

    A senior sergeant told RNZ staff were forced to either join the bullying or wear the abuse.

    It was harder to get promoted when on the outside, and the mental toll was difficult to handle, he said.

    A lot of people battled depression as a result, and there was a growing number who struggled with drug and alcohol problems.

    He said should a staff member make a complaint, it was uncommon for anything positive to come of it.

    A sergeant RNZ spoke to, also anonymously, said he approached a New Zealand Police Association delegate after being bullied by his superiors and was told he had limited options.

    He could make an official complaint, which could lead to a personal grievance and a pay-out. But he was told if it was not proven it could lead to him being shifted to a different region or role.

    The other options were to ignore the bullying, or to take an extended period of leave and hope it was better on his return.
    What is the police response?

    RNZ requested an interview with New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush. He declined.

    In a statement, deputy chief executive of people and capability Kaye Ryan said the police was committed to achieving better outcomes for its staff.

    "We want to allow our people to have the opportunity to learn from incidents, conduct and behaviour, rather than the traditional position most organisations take where the person is punished with a written warning.

    "Police has historically commenced employment investigations into bullying complaints and has traditionally responded to those complaints in a disciplinary way.

    "We have found this approach was protracted, did not satisfy the complainant or the person complained of and was damaging to the wider team."

    She said the police was reviewing its disciplinary process.

    Police Minister Stuart Nash refused to be interviewed on Morning Report, but said bullying claims were best answered by Commissioner Bush.

    "Both the commissioner and his team are aware of my expectations that police has a healthy, diverse and inclusive culture. As part of that culture I expect bullying complaints to be taken seriously."
    Call for another commission of inquiry

    The Commission of Inquiry into Police Conduct was announced early 2004. In 2007, commissioner Dame Margaret released her report, which identified a range of systemic issues and problematic behaviour patterns within police.

    Sixty recommendations were put forward for police, its conduct authority, and the government.

    Some of the changes made after inquiry have been praised, and there is a general consensus the police is a better place than it was a decade ago.

    But it appears some people have ignored the culture shift.

    The members of the police RNZ spoke to agreed that another independent inquiry was needed to look at the culture of bullying.

    "It needs to be someone who is given the authority to go in and ask questions, and meet people like me face to face," said one detective.

    "It would be nice to see that for the colleagues who are going to join in the future."

    Otherwise he would have had to resign.

    That experience was echoed by several other police officers.

    A detective said many of bullying victims had taken the option of extended leave without pay, hoping things would improve on their return to work.

    According to numbers released under the Official Information Act, between 2014 and 2017, 240 people took extended leave of three months or more.

    Just 91 of those people still work for the police.

    There is no way of telling how many of those people had been victims of bullying.

    A detective said he loved his job and his role in the police, so complaining about bullying was not an option.

    After a long period of leave, he is back in his job but the bullying is starting to ramp up again.

    Every person RNZ talked to said bullying was not universal, and there were many good managers throughout the police.


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