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Public Notice: Censure document

Released: Tuesday, 27 August 2019

Worthing Borough Council has adopted a Code of Conduct, in accordance with the provisions of the Localism Act 2011. Every Worthing Borough Councillor is required to comply with the Code of Conduct when acting in their role as a Councillor.

A Councillor's actions impact on the Council as a whole and its reputation and the public are entitled to expect the highest standards of conduct from those that they elect to public office. The intention of the legislation is to ensure that the conduct of those in public life in local government does not fall below a minimum level which engenders public confidence in democracy.

The Council received a complaint from an employee of the Sussex NHS Community Trust that they considered that Cllr Sean McDonald, a Worthing Borough Councillor, had breached the Council's Code of Conduct. An internal investigation was held and the matter was heard and determined on 20th August 2019 by the Council's Joint Governance Sub Committee.

The Sub Committee considered allegations that Cllr McDonald had made unfounded allegations about NHS employees and sent emails to NHS employees that were intimidating in nature.

The Sub Committee found that Cllr McDonald had breached the Code of Conduct by failing to treat others with respect, had conducted himself in a manner contrary to the Council's duty to promote and maintain high standards and by failing to comply with the principle of leadership.

The Sub Committee is disappointed that on this occasion Cllr McDonald's conduct fell short of that which can reasonably be expected by the public and that he failed to comply with the high standards of conduct and ethics that the Council requires of its Members.

The Sub Committee has censured Cllr McDonald by expressing their severe disapproval in this formal public statement.

The Sub Committee further requires Cllr McDonald to provide a formal written apology to the Sussex Community NHS Trust, to attend additional training and to engage with a mentor.

Signed
Cllr Kevin Boram, on behalf of Adur District and Worthing Borough Councils' Joint Governance Sub Committee

Dated 27th August 2019

(PR19-126)

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