Ronnie Hawthorn, who has Down’s syndrome, worked at a leisure centre for 17 years before bosses said they couldn’t afford to keep him on.
A disabled man lost his job at a leisure centre after 17 years – then was told he could return as an unpaid volunteer. Bosses told Ronnie Hawthorn, who has Down’s syndrome, they couldn’t afford his modest £30 a week wages.
To add insult to injury, he was then told he could still work on a voluntary basis and go to staff nights out. Ronnie, 47, said: “I feel a bit sad. I worked there for a long time.” His treatment triggered outrage from disability campaigners.
Ronnie worked for eight hours a week over two days and was paid for approximately 3.7 hours. The rest was voluntary. His parents were invited for a meeting with leisure centre chiefs. His dad Ronald, 69, said: “I couldn’t believe it. He explained to me that it was down to cutbacks but that Ronnie could still come in on a voluntary basis and nights out at Christmas.”
Later, Ronald and his wife Anne were told that there would be no redundancy or compensation. Ronald added: “Ronnie was told it was due to cutbacks but then he saw a thing in the paper about councillors going on a trip to Korea. There is penny pinching going on but it seems they can find money for some things.”
Anne, 68, a former secretary and administrator for Barnardo’s, said: “I think it’s a disgrace. He’s been doing that job perfectly for 17 years. “It works out at about £30 a week, and that’s what got to me more than anything else. We’ve been feeling bad about it. I feel it’s the vulnerable who are being pushed out.”
Kamran Mallick, chief executive of Disability Rights UK, said: “This a shocking case. It’s a prime example of how disabled people are treated differently. The lack of equality is astonishing. “I can’t imagine the employer behaving this way to other non- disabled staff. There has been no due process, no consultation, no effort to redeploy this member of staff.” Anne added: “It’s not about the money. It’s the lack of respect.”
Inverclyde Leisure said: “We are disappointed Ronnie’s parents now feel this way after an agreement had been reached and we are meeting again to discuss this matter.
So what do you think?
Tell us in the comments.
Source : https://newshoundsnewsround.wordpress.com/2018/06/09/disabled-man-sacked-from-30-a-week-council-job-told-he-can-work-for-nothing-as-volunteer/
Source : https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/outrage-disabled-man-loses-30-12669876
Who will hold the powerful to account?
Real, independent, investigative journalism is in alarming decline. It costs a lot to produce.
Many publications facing an uncertain future can no longer afford to fund it, meaning journalists are losing the ability to hold the rich and powerful to account.
Pledge as little as £1.00 to help us support independent investigative journalism