Sharon McIndoe has been removed from the social care register for reasons of misconduct – including on one occasion making the salute in front of children as young as two.
While working as a child development officer in Glasgow, she made the offensive gesture when a colleague suggested she should stop a child playing with a potentially dangerous toy.
Among the other charges found to be true by the profession’s regulator – the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) – were allegations she was “physically abusive” towards a child by dragging them across a room. The caring watchdog also proved that in 2006 McIndoe told a young boy: “If I ever see you putting glitter in the glue again, I’m going to burn your daddy’s shop down.”
The SSSC ruled that a sanction against McIndoe was necessary for the protection of the public, following a lengthy hearing process which concluded on 26 February.
All the allegations levelled against her related to a period between 1 August, 2006 and 31 August, 2012, when she was employed as a “child development officer” with Glasgow City Council.
Regarding the “Hitler sign” the committee found that: “On an occasion between 16 September 2011 and June 2012, and in the presence of service users, you did make a gesture, namely a ‘Hitler sign’, towards your colleague YY when YY challenged you about allowing the service users to play with a block of wood.In doing so you were offensive towards YY and did place her at risk of emotional harm.”
The committee also found it true that she had, on or around 31 August 2012, “pushed or kicked a bike with service user GG sitting on it and in doing so, caused the bike to strike a wall”.
Their findings also state that between 16 September, 2011 and 7 September, 2012, when addressing a colleague, McIndoe said: “I am gonny kick her f***ing heid in”, “I will take her down”, “I’m going to stab her” and “I want to kick ZZ’s head in and stab her”.
Another finding said that while working at Stirling’s Buchlyvie Nursery in 2012, she grabbed a four-year-old by the arm and “dragged him across the room”.
While the committee acknowledged that removal from the register could harm McIndoe’s reputation and bank balance, they felt the public interest demanded removal from the register.