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Trust which runs Barrow hospital begins anti-bullying scheme

A ZERO tolerance approach to bullying between hospital workers is being rolled out with the view that “one case is one case too many”.

The trust which runs Furness General Hospital has launched its Bullying and Harassment campaign based on feedback from last year’s annual staff survey.

It is just one part of the University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust’s Engage programme, a host of projects aimed at showing staff how important they are to the organisation.

Rachel Hunt, the trust’s human resources business partner and lead for the Engage project, said: “Any response in a staff survey that says people have experienced or witnessed bullying is a concern, regardless of how many staff or what percentage of staff have reported it. The trust board are absolutely adamant that this needs to be addressed. It’s a zero tolerance issue for us. One case would be too many.”

The campaign is boosted by the trust’s Respect Champion project, which has seen staff at all levels volunteer to provide a listening ear for anyone experiencing bullying.

Porters, nurses and doctors have all signed up to the scheme, which aims to make sure employees always feel they have someone to speak to, even if they are reluctant to take their problems to a manager.

Shona Williams, HR project manager and respect champion, said: “Most people in any organisation will have experienced bullying at some point in their life, whether it’s at work or school or university. It’s something we can all relate to and, as a result, a lot of people want to empower colleagues who may need their help.

“For me if there’s something I can do to make someone’s working life a little better, even if it’s just sitting in a room listening to them, that’s enough for me.”

Other elements of Engage include the Star of the Month scheme, which aims to reward outstanding employees and “You said we did” which launches next month and will demonstrate how trust bosses respond to suggestions from frontline staff. A project is also planned around whistleblowing.

Miss Hunt said making employees feel valued has long been a priority for the trust, despite the organisation coming under criticism for staff disengagement in a Care Quality Commission report published in June.

She said: “There has been a lot going on in the background that’s coming to the fore now. These big projects do take a while to filter through.

“It’s always disappointing to hear that staff don’t feel engaged or that they’re not being communicated with, but there’s going to be lots more to come from the Engage project.”

Have your say

Three years ago I was Invited to a members meeting at the Rheged in Penrith for the Cumbria Partnership NHS Trust Foundation, the message from the Trust was that it was going to "Talk talk talk", after this speech I stood up & asked perhaps it would also be good Idea to "Listen listen listen" as well, there was a round of applause, Unfortunately since then that Trust, has slipped back in to its old habits of closing its Ears & its Doors, whenever there are complaints or questions that need addressing! There needs to be some changes, too this hear this suggestion from the Furness General & the Morecambe Bay Trust, sounds like a great Idea, If it happens? But for now how about a response from the Cumbria Partnership Trust & Health Watch ? At least it would be a start rather than sit back & watch yet another good Idea go by the wayside ?

Posted by Stephen Wallwork on 26 August 2014 at 05:41

All credit to anyone brave (or daft) enough to name themselves in articles such as this. I can guarantee any staff will unfortunately soon find themselves under a very painful spotlight from the very management to which they refer.
Unfortunately, the Trust Board and Execs are prone to have their information filtered by the management staff causing the Trust problems and so remain unaware of the real causes of the problems within CPFT.
Of course, they themselves should be held accountable, as they could easily spend more time talking with frontline staff, but it appears that they’d rather trust the people that they’ve appointed to higher grades and salaries.
Imagine a business where a manager has a serious complaint lodged against them and is given an attractive voluntary redundancy package, only to be re-employed again in a management-related, new role.
Or imagine a business where the HR Department openly states that its role is to support management and the welfare of the employees is a secondary concern?
The Trust has spent money on commissioning a whole series of staff satisfaction surveys, all of which confirm that communications between staff and their ‘management’ are open and that relationships are good…except that by ‘management’, the forms actually refer to team leaders and do not ask questions about those higher up in the management structures.
Staff sickness is at a ridiculously high level, whilst the newly installed whistleblowing "Lead"’s first recommendation has repeatedly been to refer to management.
...And where are the Unions? Doing their best to remain on friendly terms with the Trust.

Posted by Bullied and Tired of It on 25 August 2014 at 19:20

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