Present: Alex Scott-Samuel (ASS), Tom Fitzgerald (TF) Diane Jones(DJ), Nicholas Csergo(NC), Vivien Walsh(VWa), David Wrigley(DWr), Steve Bedser(SB), Gurinder Josan(G J), Jane Roberts(JR), Guy Baily(GB), Brian Fisher(BF), Brian Gibbons(BG), Tony Jewell(TJ), John Lipetz(JL), Mike Roberts(MR), Eileen O’Keefe(EO’K), Vivien Gilardi(VG), Stephen Warren(SW), Carol Ackroyd(CA), Norma Dudley(ND), Coral Jones(CJ), Caroline Bedale(CB), Allison Gardner(AG), Shaun McBride(SMcB), Laurence Cotter(LC), Jon Shaffer(JS), Kathrin Thomas(KT), Mark Ladbrooke(ML), Paul Leake(PL), Jos Bell(JB), Helen Cranage(HC), Irene Leonard(IL), Alan Hall(AH),

Judith Varley(JV)     Tom Fitzgerald (TF) came later

Observers:   None

1    Apologies:  Jean Hardiman Smith, Jacky Davis, Allison Scoular, Catharine Grundy-Glew, Corrie Lowry, Katrina Murray, Tony Beddow, Caroline Walsh, Andy Thompson, Peter Mayer, James Williamson

Alex Scott Samuel welcomed delegates and everyone sent greetings and good wishes to Jean Hardiman Smith, Tony Beddow and Andy Thompson that current health problems will be speedily resolved

2   Minutes of the September 1 Leeds Central Council meeting and Matters Arising   Many amendments had been proposed following the Leeds meeting.  JV pointed out that the Minutes were not supposed to be verbatim of all comments made but a brief summary to convey the essence and conclusion of debates.  She noted debate in as unbiased a way as possible.  Anyone with specific detailed, technical information should send her an e-mail note of it to ensure its accuracy.  JV can only record delegates who sign the attendance sheet as present

Jane Roberts was present in Leeds and Brian Gibbons had sent apologies.

Item 3   Disciplinary Appeal   Guidelines were ACAS not NHS  GJ had asked that subgroup personnel and numbers should be recorded.   Bf commented that there had been criticism of the disciplinary process.  One of the recommendations following the criticism was that the CC has ultimate responsibility for the process.  In order that Martin’s treatment be fair and the reputation of the SHA be maintained, he had suggested the criticism be taken seriously and that CC respond in a positive style.  He added that though the process had been criticised, Andy Thompson’s recommendations should be taken seriously and need to be seen as fair.

Item 5  CB said Manchester branch did not have funds so Martin Rathfelder had suggested a Treasurer was un-necessary.

3 Chair’s Review      Review of Governance 2014  (Clarke Review) – available on the SHA website

GJ asked whether the Clarke Review is for discussion today or approval.  ASS said the 2014 review should be examined rapidly by an appropriate voluntary group convened by Andy Thompson to bring it up to date.  JL suggested a group of 5 could be organised urgently to report back.  MR (one of the Clarke review commissioners) said it was obvious by 2014 that SHA governance was inadequate, and the legacy of this recognition is that as an organisation, SHA has indeed proved unfit.  Proper governance should be set up in time for the AGM so a report should be available and agreed by the January meeting, otherwise SHA will be open to criticism.  JB added that it was essential we became incorporated to become a limited liability company.  PL reminded us that governance also applied to local Constituency Labour Party and branch associations.  BG said  SHA was dysfunctional, and a review of Clarke, incorporation and standing orders was essential.  VG said there was a serious lack in respect of standing orders, and she’d like to have new people reviewing Clarke.  Could volunteers from this meeting be forwarded to Andy for his immediate attention as soon as he’s better?  SW said there’s a history about why Clarke was left aside; it stated everything that was needed for an organisation and it now needs urgent attention and rapid implementation.  Should some elements be prioritised for upgrading?  JR asked that short Terms of Reference be circulated to Central Council.  GJ asked if members from branches could be included in the review panel.  BG suggested priorities should include finance (with Officers getting full access to all SHA accounts, and was assured by TF that this had now happened), membership, and constitutional matters – including that any delegate missing 2 consecutive meetings of Central Council without explanation /apology, would be deemed to have resigned.

CB requested a full financial report at the next meeting

4     Officers’ Reports

Secretary’s report     Labour Party  Conference:  The SHA proposal as a contemporary Motion on social care was not successful and BF would like advice on how we can ensure social care is included in next year’s conference.  There were 2 very successful SHA fringe meetings, one on maternity policy and the other on social care and reinstatement of the NHS with Emma Dent Coad MP and Eleanor Smith MP contributing.  CJ had spoken on the decriminalisation of abortion in N Ireland at the Women’s Conference.  SHA members had also taken part in a health discussion organised by Health Campaigns Together in the World Transformed fringe conference

NW Regional LP Conference    Jean Hardiman Smith proposed a Motion on the Mental Capacity Assessment Bill  and wants this discussed at CC

ASS commented that the shadow health team is keen to continue discussion with SHA, particularly on health inequalities and digital systems

Treasurer’s Report    TF reported that all accounts have now been recovered and a written report would be  provided at the next meeting

5   Report on the Disciplinary Appeal.  David Wrigley (DW) as Chair reported.  He thanked Jean Hardiman Smith for her help despite her on-going health problems.  Two of the 4 CC delegates who had volunteered for the October hearing were randomly chosen with 1 reserve.  Martin’s grounds for appeal were that sanction of dismissal was too severe.  Alongside legal support and meeting all ACAS requirements, allegations and counter-allegations were examined and all issues addressed over a period of 5 hours.  Questions were asked and answered, and the decision was left over to the following day to allow time for careful consideration of all aspects of the information heard.   The original decision was upheld.   DW then took questions from CC.

JR asked for details of the legal advice and DW confirmed ACAS advice had been taken, the panel were fresh and independent of previous proceedings or information. SHA had employed a specialist employment solicitor for this stage of the appeal.  Whilst Andy Thompson had provided legal experience for the primary hearing, he was not present for the secondary appeal but was available should DW or colleagues need support or further help.  DW also thought it inappropriate for further discussion since the next stage of the disciplinary process is now with ACAS.  SB agreed it was inappropriate to continue discussion as the appeal was still underway.  However, he wanted to be confident that the Officers were discharging their duties effectively and asked if there might be any personal liability for costs; specifically, were homes at risk?  He wanted more than anecdotal assurance, and ASS responded that expert advice is that delegates will not incur legal costs and he supported DW’s comment that disclosure of further details might prejudice the outcome of future actions.

SW and JB commented that questions raised now could await answers until it was acceptable in terms of due process.

JR and AG asked why the legal advisor could not be named, GJ asked about the accusation that the panel were making things up, wasn’t there a liability to SHA members, and CC need to be satisfied with due process?   LC stated that a verbal explanation of procedure was insufficient; it had to be written.  ASS assured delegates that a full report will be produced at the end of the process.

Later in the meeting, debate returned to the Disciplinary process and specific questions were asked.  I have inserted it here because of its relevance to the topic.   ASS repeated that the legal ruling was that because verbal debate by CC delegates might prejudice the eventual outcome of any future Tribunal, the matter should not be further discussed.  Once the process is complete, the lawyer would be paid and a written report provided.  Some delegates thought on-going information about the advice sought and given should have been provided to CC and a final report is not the same thing.  ASS said the acceptable process is the report once it’s completed.  Further questions were posed and ASS then curtailed discussion by asking for a vote on a motion that had been proposed, on moving to the next item.  The motion was carried.

6       Policy Report   (Tony Beddow in absentia)     Groups have been set up on Mental Health and Public Health.  Not all CC delegates had been involved in choosing the topics

AH suggested priorities could be as planned, or in response to emergency.  Decisions were needed as health developments were happening so quickly.  BG said Tony’s prescriptive model and might not be possible for every topic.  Kathrin’s paper had been discussed in Leeds and needs to remain on the agenda.  JL said KONP and HCT were keeping us up to date with health events whilst we were driving the immediate agenda.  GJ asked that diversity and inclusivity should be respected especially in mental health

7    Resolutions  JR withdrew her motion.

8 Labour Party

NHS Reinstatement Bill    ML said there was a strong input to the shadow cabinet and ASS confirmed there was a strong team behind the shadow team, with Eleanor Smith, Allyson Pollock and Peter Roderick.  The Bill as it stands at present is on the parliamentary website and had support from Jon Ashworth and the leader’s office

National Policy Forum  JB said that due to the  democracy review the NPF would have only one more meeting before being disbanded. CA said the SHA policy development team needs to push on the NHS Bill as well as in the sub-sections, so we need to be clear what we are doing and asked that these comments be fed back to Tony.  ASS said an NHS Bill may be enacted at the earliest stage of a Labour Government, so we need to know how this can best be achieved.  NC said consultation can be via the NPF Report.  MR reminded us that whilst talk about the NHS is positive, health inequalities, poverty and public health continue to increase.  There’s a ripple effect from the NPF but the shadow team needs to be kept up to date.  The biggest problem with the NHS is the social care team, JB suggested meetings on specific topics on the next few months

9    AOB

Social Care Conference   BF reminded delegates of the Social Care Conference to be held in Birmingham, and the Local Government Conference in Manchester next week and asked if any SHA member could get there.  ML said that now at the end of the living wage week, the UN Special representative Report had highlighted the health collapse in the UK.  Could SHA write to support the living wage campaign?

Women’s Conference  CJ raised the matter of the Women’s Conference in Telford in February. BF asked for a Motion on social care to be included; this was agreed.  Each CLP can send 2 members to this meeting. CJ said motions and delegates for the LP Women’s Conference in February need to be decided by mid January.  Allocation is 2 delegates / CLP, 1 of which was to be disabled or BAME or LGBT.  In answer to her question, only women vote.  SB said Catharine Grundy-Glew (not present) wants to be included.  CB said delegates could be self-selected and asked if named individuals could be changed subsequently.  SB said that for CLP or affiliate delegates, the deadline is the 14 Jan, and that would be rigid.  ASS said he’d ensure delegates would be circulated in time to complete the process.

10 Next meetings

The next SHA meeting has been rescheduled to 19 January, 1.00-5.00pm,  and will be in Oxford.    The AGM will be on 30 March in Cardiff.

 

Judith Varley   Minutes Sec    7.12.18

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2 Comments

  1. Will Warren says:

    The SHA cannot become a company. It’s not a business. Political organisations cannot be community interest companies.

  2. CLPs affiliate with trade unions and socialist societies I think CLPs may have problems affiliating with any type of company

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