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Neil Davey

Spotted Zebra

Senior Content Manager

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Islington council hires interim director following suspension

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An interim director has been brought in to oversee Islington Council’s troubled HR function following an investigation into claims of bullying and financial mismanagement by its boss.

Richard Mycroft has been brought in to caretake the department after Maria King was suspended on full pay in December last year. Senior members of King’s team are understood to have filed complaints against her for alleged bullying and harassment.
 
But Mycroft, who was former HR director at Merton Council, the Passport Agency and the London Probation Service (LPS), has also been the subject of controversy in the past.
 
In 2003, he was placed on ‘special leave’ from LPS during an investigation into claims that more than 200 new recruits, who were mainly trainee probation officers, had not undergone criminal record checks before being allowed to work with customers.
 
Back at Islington, however, four other HR managers have also quit in recent months because they were said to be frustrated with both King’s alleged behaviour and delays in concluding the official probe, which was undertaken by an external investigator, according to Personneltoday.com.
 
These managers include Hesketh Emden, organisation development manager, and talent manager, Subo Shanmuganathan, who resigned in November with immediate effect.
 
The findings of the investigation were presented to council leaders last month and a disciplinary hearing is scheduled to take place in the next few weeks.
 
Council auditors are also scrutinising financial contracts for more than £1 million of HR consultancy work dating back several years, and the hearing will likewise explore whether the correct appointment procedures were followed.
Author Profile Picture
Neil Davey

Senior Content Manager

Read more from Neil Davey
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