Scottish Government employee pictured bound and gagged loses tribunal

A woman who complained of a racist and misogynistic culture in a Scottish government department claims she was taped to a chair and gagged by two male colleagues.
A woman who complained of a racist and misogynistic culture in a Scottish government department claims she was taped to a chair and gagged by two male colleagues.
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A Scottish Government agency employee who was pictured bound and gagged at work has lost her case at an employment tribunal.

DeeAnn Fitzpatrick claimed she experienced bullying and harassment after she became a “whistleblower” while employed as a fisheries officer at Marine Scotland.

DeeAnn Fitzpatrick, Scottish Government agency worker. Picture: Family Handout/PA Wire

DeeAnn Fitzpatrick, Scottish Government agency worker. Picture: Family Handout/PA Wire

At an employment tribunal in Aberdeen in June the 49-year-old Canadian national said she felt intimidated after being sent anonymous cards, claiming she was targeted with sexual harassment and for being a woman, as well as over her age.

The abuse was said to have taken place between 2015 and 2017 while she was based in the government body’s Scrabster office in the Highlands and continued after she was signed off.

In a previous hearing, Ms Fitzpatrick alleged she was taped to a chair and gagged by colleagues in 2010.

However it is understood the tribunal was unable to consider that allegation as it was said to have taken place more than three years before the complaint was brought.

The employment tribunal ruled against Ms Fitzpatrick in its decision on the case.

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In its judgment the tribunal said it could not agree whether the cards could be said to have been likely to come from current colleagues.

In a statement the Fitzpatrick family said: “The Fitzpatrick family are hugely disappointed with the result of the Tribunal.”

However they said the decision was “not unexpected” as the alleged restraint incident could not be taken into account.

Earlier in the year First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she had directed the government’s permanent secretary Leslie Evans to carry out a review of Ms Fitzpatrick’s case.