Earlier this year, Tory MP James Morris launched an extraordinary attack in the Commons on Sandwell Council and its leader Steve Eling, accusing the ‘moderate’-dominated council of becoming,
synonymous with local government incompetence, corruption, and cronyism.
In addition, a Morris letter to Eling and the council’s chief executive attacked the use of ‘confidentiality agreements’ to silence ex-employees:
Eling not only denied but ‘rubbished’ the claim that the council had been using confidentiality agreements – telling local newspaper the Halesowen News that the council does not use them:
In spite of this denial, the SKWAWKBOX has obtained a copy of a Sandwell Council confidentiality agreement issued to one of its ex-employees. The confidentiality requirement is indisputable:
The second page shown makes clear that the council is providing a cash payment to the employee in return for silence about its affairs.
The SKWAWKBOX attempted to call Steve Eling for comment. He did not pick up. An emailed enquiry was sent instead, asking:
When James Morris attacked you in January, among other things over the council’s use of confidentiality agreements, you said, according to Halesowen News, that the council doesn’t use them.
Please advise by return whether that is that still your position.
Although the enquiry was sent directly to Steve Eling, an acknowledgement was received from his assistant advising that the council’s press office would respond on his behalf. By the time of publication almost six hours later, no response had been received.
The SKWAWKBOX needs your support. This blog is provided free of charge but depends on the generosity of its readers to be viable. If you can afford to, please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal. Thanks for your solidarity so this blog can keep bringing you information the Establishment would prefer you not to know about.
If you wish to reblog this post for non-commercial use, you are welcome to do so – see here for more.