The GHA is saddened by the statement released by Unite the Union which suggests that Unite seem unable to put this matter to bed and move on.
GHA rules have been followed throughout. The matter was heard by an independent disciplinary board appointed by the GHA under the Medical (Gibraltar Health Authority) Act 1987 which dismissed all charges of misconduct against Dr Cassaglia following proceedings which were robustly presented and challenged. Insofar as the GHA is concerned, that is the end of the matter.
The GHA has not disclosed the ruling of the Disciplinary Board, but it replied to press questions that were put to the GHA. Whereas in the majority of cases of internal proceedings they will remain internal, this case has already been ventilated in the press over the course of a number of years.
Unite the Union need to be reminded that, whereas the Board found the complainant and Dr Cassaglia as truthful witnesses, they found that other supporting witnesses had colluded against Dr Cassaglia and that the evidence of those witnesses was unreliable. They found that there was evidence that suggested that collusion, or at a minimum active coordination for purposes that could not be properly explained, was instigated or encouraged by a senior member of the laboratory staff. The Board also found that there were inconsistencies in the complainant’s evidence whilst the evidence of Dr Cassaglia had been clear, consistent and credible from the very outset.
Unite state that the outcome of the Employment Tribunal proceedings which were previously brought by the complainant against the GHA was different. It is, however, worth noting that apart from the finding of collusion by the Disciplinary Board, the Board also found that important documents had not been disclosed to the Employment Tribunal. The Board described this as an “unexplained failure”.
Unite the Union need to accept the outcome of a fair and independent board, let the matter rest and let the GHA, including Dr Cassaglia and the complainant, continue with its business without any further distractions.