SDRC RESPONDS: “Completely rejects” claims of bullying
THE Southern Downs Regional Council "completely rejects" claims that workplace bullying led to the death of late employee Scott Locke.
After four years of formal complaints, Mr Locke was found dead by apparent suicide in his Warwick home on Monday, February 24.
According to State Member for the Southern Downs James Lister, Mr Locke's widow blamed council and sought an independent investigation through a coronial inquest.
In a letter to the Attorney-General Yvette D'Ath, Mr Lister said the council was associated with two suspected suicides and a suicide attempt and called for an investigation.
A spokeswoman said the council would participate in a coronial inquest, should one be called, but dismissed Mr Lister's allegations.
"Council remains committed to fostering a workplace free of bullying," she said.
"All at Southern Downs Regional Council offer their condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Scott Locke."
The council did not make direct contact with the Locke family due to a direct request from their extended family, according to the spokeswoman.
Instead, she said they were liaising through the family's nominated representative from the Australian Workers' Union.
Counselling services have been made available to the council staff and an employee assistance program is available.
The council refused to respond to questions regarding their duty of care to Mr Locke or to reveal the number of bullying complaints filed over the last four years.
If you, or someone you know, is struggling, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.