Monday, 22 February 2010

Bullying Helpline Patron Quits - Update Make that two, no three

Professor Cary Cooper has just announced that he has quit the National Bullying Helpline (NBH) the organisation at the heart of the Brown bullying enquiries and concerns about the confidentiality of those who have called it. Prof. Cooper an expert in workplace stress told the BBC that he was "really upset" adding:

"[As] a helpline or counselling service you never, ever reveal anything to do with when a client calls you in any way."

Another bullying charity Bulling UK had said on its website yesterday it was "horrified" that Christine Pratt CEO of the NBH had "all but identified" one caller in media interviews. Speaking of the serious nature of such disclosure they said:

"It's hard to imagine a more serious breach of confidentiality."

With Professor Cooper's departure today serious questions need to be asked about this incident, not just the leakage of the material but now that they have been exposed the claims of those who had called.

UPDATE: A second patron TV presenter Sarah Cawood has also announced that she has stepped down. Another Patron Ann Widdecombe MP has also expressed concerns about recent events:

"The helpline is supposed to be confidential and while no details were revealed I do not think it is a good idea."

UPDATE 2: No sooner had a published the last update than tweetdeck alerted me to the fact that Ann Widdecombe is also stepping down. In a statement Ms Cawood said that the reason she is stepping down said:

"In light of the recent events where confidential phone calls were made public, I feel it is no longer a campaign with which I would like my name to be associated."

However, Christine Pratt apparently fire fighting said:

"Her role as a patron has been disappointing and she has not got involved in spite of making many promises," she said.

"Appointing her as a patron was with hindsight a mistake."


  1. Cary Cooper is a man, nitwit!

  2. I do apologise the BBC had a picture of a woman with the story. I guess that was Pratt.