Army Redress abuse in the news again

#1
Whats the point of an Armed Forces complaints ombudsman when the rot starts at the first level of a redress and witnesses are victimised.
This one will get messy!

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/war-hero-amputee-accuses-senior-3663493

One of the Army’s most severely injured Afghanistan war veterans will this week attempt to prove that senior officers bullied him out of the forces.

Tom Neathway, who lost his legs and an arm in a Taliban bomb blast, also alleges that chiefs tried to cover up his claims, and attempted to discredit his witnesses.

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/news/uk/defence/article4112785.ece



** The Times - Triple amputee accuses army of closing ranks over his allegations of bullying **

Deborah Haynes, Defence Editor, 9 Jun 14

A triple amputee who says that he was bullied out of the Army will tomorrow accuse senior officers of “closing ranks” to protect their careers after he complained about the alleged mistreatment, The Times can reveal.

Tom Neathway, 30, a paratrooper who lost both legs and an arm in a Taliban bomb blast, will claim at a closed-door hearing that he was bullied by his regimental sergeant major and that a Parachute Regiment officer then attempted to “block” him from lodging a complaint.

The former corporal, who was once an army success story because of his desire to continue serving even after being wounded in Afghanistan in 2008, also alleges that attempts were made to discredit his witnesses. “The way that these individuals have closed ranks, it’s ridiculous and they think they can get away with it,” claimed Mr Neathway, from Worcester, who starred in the BBC series Wounded and took part in the Olympic torch relay in 2012.

The allegations, which will be made at a three-day hearing in Andover, are among the most serious in a series of alleged abuse cases reported by The Times over the past 18 months that raise questions about the unique power held by the army to investigate itself.

Philip Hammond, the defence secretary, has announced plans to toughen up the service complaints system but critics say that the reforms are far too little and will not come into effect unless new legislation is draw up.

“Tom’s treatment shows that soldiers are bullied, blocked from complaining, and punished if they dare rock the boat by doing so,” said Major Ross McLeod, who left the army earlier this year and has been offering Mr Neathway advice.

Mr Neathway has spoken out before about the alleged bullying by Warrant Officer 1 Alistair Hutcheson. But tomorrow will be the first time he gives oral evidence.

The most damning allegation — denied by the sergeant major — is that RSM Hutcheson whispered in the amputee’s ear when they worked together at a parachute training unit in Oxfordshire in 2011: “You’re not much of a paratrooper anymore, are you”.

Mr Neathway also accuses Major John Chetty, his former boss, of attempting to block him from lodging a complaint about the alleged bullying and of threatening to move him from specially-adapted facilities for wounded personnel at RAF Brize Norton back to Colchester if he complained.

“My first question will be why?” the injured soldier told The Times yesterday. “Why wasn’t it [the complaint] investigated properly to begin with?”

In a complex case that has dragged on for almost three years, there are also allegations of “witness victimisation”.

A letter emerged during the investigation that appears to show evidence of one individual using unofficial channels to try to help another. The “personal letter” from Major James Chiswell, himself a former non-commissioned officer in the Parachute Regiment, who was assisting RSM Hutcheson, was addressed to Lieutenant-Colonel James Birch, the investigating officer. It appears to offer a negative opinion on staff at the parachute training support unit where the witnesses, Mr Neathway, RSM Hutcheson and Major Chetty worked.

The Times understands that Major Chiswell was later removed from assisting RSM Hutcheson.
In November 2012, Lieutenant-Colonel Birch partly upheld the alleged bullying complaint against RSM Hutcheson, although he did not find that he had made the mocking “you’re not much of a paratrooper” remark — a finding that will be challenged at the hearing.

One of the witnesses, Glanville Evans, was once the Prince of Wales’s parachute instructor. He wrote to David Cameron, his local MP, claiming that his character was allegedly criticised by another senior officer, Brigadier Greville Bibby, who overturned Colonel Birch’s decision.

Major Chiswell will appear at the hearing, but Brigadier Bibby will not be present despite requests by Mr Neathway ‘s lawyers that he should attend.

A spokeswoman for the MoD said it was not possible to comment on individual cases or to seek comment from individuals involved."
 
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#3
Was it really necessary to open a new thread on this (and then post in both the new one and the old one)?
 
#4
It kinda makes sense to open a new thread and link to previous thread

However. Unless some amazing evidence comes to light the Army and MoD is looking at, based on comments in the previous thread, getting well and truly buttf**ked on this one
 
#6
It kinda makes sense to open a new thread and link to previous thread
However. Unless some amazing evidence comes to light the Army and MoD is looking at, based on comments in the previous thread, getting well and truly buttf**ked on this one
My bold. Yep. Makes sense. No need to post the same post, word for word in the old thread, though!
 
#7
Whats the point of an Armed Forces complaints ombudsman when the rot starts at the first level of a redress and witnesses are victimised.
This one will get messy!

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/war-hero-amputee-accuses-senior-3663493

One of the Army’s most severely injured Afghanistan war veterans will this week attempt to prove that senior officers bullied him out of the forces.

Tom Neathway, who lost his legs and an arm in a Taliban bomb blast, also alleges that chiefs tried to cover up his claims, and attempted to discredit his witnesses.

http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/news/uk/defence/article4112785.ece



** The Times - Triple amputee accuses army of closing ranks over his allegations of bullying **

Deborah Haynes, Defence Editor, 9 Jun 14

A triple amputee who says that he was bullied out of the Army will tomorrow accuse senior officers of “closing ranks” to protect their careers after he complained about the alleged mistreatment, The Times can reveal.

Tom Neathway, 30, a paratrooper who lost both legs and an arm in a Taliban bomb blast, will claim at a closed-door hearing that he was bullied by his regimental sergeant major and that a Parachute Regiment officer then attempted to “block” him from lodging a complaint.

The former corporal, who was once an army success story because of his desire to continue serving even after being wounded in Afghanistan in 2008, also alleges that attempts were made to discredit his witnesses. “The way that these individuals have closed ranks, it’s ridiculous and they think they can get away with it,” claimed Mr Neathway, from Worcester, who starred in the BBC series Wounded and took part in the Olympic torch relay in 2012.

The allegations, which will be made at a three-day hearing in Andover, are among the most serious in a series of alleged abuse cases reported by The Times over the past 18 months that raise questions about the unique power held by the army to investigate itself.

Philip Hammond, the defence secretary, has announced plans to toughen up the service complaints system but critics say that the reforms are far too little and will not come into effect unless new legislation is draw up.

“Tom’s treatment shows that soldiers are bullied, blocked from complaining, and punished if they dare rock the boat by doing so,” said Major Ross McLeod, who left the army earlier this year and has been offering Mr Neathway advice.

Mr Neathway has spoken out before about the alleged bullying by Warrant Officer 1 Alistair Hutcheson. But tomorrow will be the first time he gives oral evidence.

The most damning allegation — denied by the sergeant major — is that RSM Hutcheson whispered in the amputee’s ear when they worked together at a parachute training unit in Oxfordshire in 2011: “You’re not much of a paratrooper anymore, are you”.

Mr Neathway also accuses Major John Chetty, his former boss, of attempting to block him from lodging a complaint about the alleged bullying and of threatening to move him from specially-adapted facilities for wounded personnel at RAF Brize Norton back to Colchester if he complained.

“My first question will be why?” the injured soldier told The Times yesterday. “Why wasn’t it [the complaint] investigated properly to begin with?”

In a complex case that has dragged on for almost three years, there are also allegations of “witness victimisation”.

A letter emerged during the investigation that appears to show evidence of one individual using unofficial channels to try to help another. The “personal letter” from Major James Chiswell, himself a former non-commissioned officer in the Parachute Regiment, who was assisting RSM Hutcheson, was addressed to Lieutenant-Colonel James Birch, the investigating officer. It appears to offer a negative opinion on staff at the parachute training support unit where the witnesses, Mr Neathway, RSM Hutcheson and Major Chetty worked.

The Times understands that Major Chiswell was later removed from assisting RSM Hutcheson.
In November 2012, Lieutenant-Colonel Birch partly upheld the alleged bullying complaint against RSM Hutcheson, although he did not find that he had made the mocking “you’re not much of a paratrooper” remark — a finding that will be challenged at the hearing.

One of the witnesses, Glanville Evans, was once the Prince of Wales’s parachute instructor. He wrote to David Cameron, his local MP, claiming that his character was allegedly criticised by another senior officer, Brigadier Greville Bibby, who overturned Colonel Birch’s decision.

Major Chiswell will appear at the hearing, but Brigadier Bibby will not be present despite requests by Mr Neathway ‘s lawyers that he should attend.

A spokeswoman for the MoD said it was not possible to comment on individual cases or to seek comment from individuals involved."
While the proposed powers of the armed forces ombudsman are not that much more than those of the present SCC, is it possible that the imminence of this particular case had something to do with the MoD's climb down about having an AF ombudsman at all, after fighting tooth and nail against it?
 
#9
The MOD's line on this is:

We owe our servicemen and women a huge debt of gratitude especially those, like Corporal Neathway, who have been injured as a result of their service. And, whilst we cannot comment on individual service complaints, we are clear that all personnel should be treated fairly, and with dignity, so we ensure that all commanding officers receive thorough training which highlights their responsibility to protect personnel from harassment. Every complaint of bullying or harassment is taken extremely seriously and allegations are investigated fully.

The service complaints system is a key route for personnel to raise issues affecting them, and we recognise its crucial role in ensuring the duty of care to the men and women of our Armed Forces. That is precisely why we have worked hard to improve how complaints are managed.

However, we are not complacent and recognise there is more to do. That is why we have recently introduced legislation to strengthen the system and create the Armed Forces' first Service Complaints Ombudsman. We want to do the very best for our servicemen and women and these changes will help us to deal with their issues more quickly and fairly.
It doesn't appear to have occurred to them that 'allegations are investigated fully' is meaningless when the people doing the investigating are neither impartial nor interested in an outcome that is detrimental to the system they are part of.

For the MoD to say they are not complacent in these matters is breathtaking arrogance, especially as it seems that things move forward only when cases have been so disastrously mishandled (with all the personal distress that this involves for the complainant), that they gather media attention.
 

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