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Unite rejects former convenor’s criticism

Unite the Union has dismissed as baseless the criticism levelled at the union’s local leadership by a former convenor.

Marilyn Bramble, who until recently was convenor at the GHA and also represented Gibraltar on Unite’s National Executive in the UK, claimed the union’s members in Gibraltar were receiving “unprofessional and disgraceful” service.

Mrs Bramble said she became the target of nasty criticism after she raised her concerns with union leaders, leaving her feeling “intimidated, degraded, humiliated and embarrassed”.

But in a firm rebuttal, Unite regional officer Victor Ochello said the union had taken her concerns seriously and, contrary to Mrs Bramble’s claims, had investigated.

“The view of the union is that although Ms Bramble has made a series of complaints and allegations over a number of months to the union’s leadership in Gibraltar and in London subsequent inquires, including a thorough review of the file submitted by Marilyn, determined that there was not sufficient evidence to uphold her allegations,” Mr Ochello said in a letter to this newspaper.

Mr Ochello said Unite had a zero tolerance policy on bullying and would not tolerate it within the union.

He also voiced surprise at the timing of the public allegations made by Mrs Bramble, who is no longer a union official and is employed by the Gibraltar Government.

“It is regrettable that Marilyn has chosen to make public her disagreements just prior to Unite’s demonstration supporting proper apprenticeships and against the use of zero hours contracts and the exploitation of agency workers, timing that I am sure is not coincidental,” he said.

The letter was signed by Mr Ochello but was sent to the Chronicle by Unite’s press office in London, which had been contacted by the local branch after Mrs Bramble raised her concerns publicly.

See letter on page four of our print or e-editions.