Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) bullied employees, to shut them up about radiation concerns

In their statement to Comcare’s investigator, Mr Howe and Mr Bourke said that while they had been reinstated, they were still being harassed.
The case follows that of David Reid, a former staff-elected health and safety officer who was suspended in June 2009 and sacked last June. He had also raised concerns about contamination in the ARI.


Lucas Heights nuclear reactor bullying exposed
BY: LEIGH DAYTON,  The Australian March 16, 2012
  ADMINISTRATORS at Australia’s only nuclear reactor facility used findings of an inaccurate, biased and partially fabricated in-house report as the pretext to suspend – and recommend the dismissal of – two employees who raised health and safety concerns over the mishandling of radioactive materials.

The damning conclusion comes
from an investigation by the national workplace regulator, Comcare,
into events surrounding an incident in September 2010 in which a third
employee was contaminated with radioactive yttrium-90 at the
radioisotope production facility (ARI).

The Comcare investigation report, completed last December and obtained
by The Australian, confirms long-running claims of bullying and
cover-ups at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology
Organisation’s Lucas Heights facility in Sydney’s south.

Comcare found no evidence to support ANSTO’s claim that technicians
Jason Howe and John Bourke engaged in “serious misconduct” when they
sought to have the contamination event investigated. The report also
dismissed allegations that Mr Howe and Mr Bourke intended to “damage
the reputation” of ANSTO or had conspired with a former employee to
falsify events surrounding the incident. The circumstances surrounding
the contamination incident and ANSTO’s allegations against the men are
detailed in the Comcare report submitted by investigator Wayne Gibson
on December 19 last year….

Comcare found the ANSTO investigator’s report “was not impartial or
reliable”. He noted as well, that the investigator included fabricated
statements and “relied on hearsay and opinion from personnel . . . in
the form of emails, conversations and handwritten notes”.

Comcare concluded that the men had been denied procedural justice, and
that the ANSTO investigation’s findings “cannot be accepted as factual
evidence”…..

In their statement to Comcare’s investigator, Mr Howe and Mr Bourke said that while they had been reinstated, they were still being harassed.
The case follows that of David Reid, a former staff-elected health and safety officer who was suspended in June 2009 and sacked last June. He had also raised concerns about contamination in the ARI.
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/health/nuclear-reactor-bullying-exposed/story-fn59nokw-1226300909197

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March 16, 2012 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, civil liberties |

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