IRT at Milton has finally filled in some blanks to the Aged Care Complaints Commissioner about an online video, Good Death, after assertions by sacked colleagues Eddie Lee and Shane Lyttle.
IRT first told Fairfax the company was not responsible for making the video.
However Good Death featured IRT’s palliative care services, presented by In-Home Care (IHC) manager Debbie Turnbull, shot partly on IRT property with elderly clients, two now deceased. It was posted on ABC Open, Facebook and Vimeo.
In early February, IRT would only say Lee’s and Lyttle’s claims that the clients had not given permission to show them online “have been investigated and appropriate action taken”.
IRT has now conceded to the Commissioner what it previously refused to tell everyone: that an “individual staff member involved did not adhere” to its media policy and “instead followed informal processes in seeking permission for the video and its release”.
An “individual staff member involved did not adhere" to media policy.- IRT to the Aged Care Complaints Commissioner
IRT said it had now “educated the relevant staff member about the correct protocol for responding to media enquiries”.
The Commission did not specifically name IRT but told the “approved provider” Mr Lee was satisfied with its “remedial action … to address the gaps”.
However the Commission also said Mr Lee was dissatisfied that he attempted to resolve it locally but the provider would not collaborate.
Lee and Lyttle feel vindicated but remain angry, believing IRT preferred to bury the problem they raised, victimise and discriminate against them, then dump them.
A previous notable breach by IRT staff of social media policy in 2011 saw seven sacked at Nowra for posting Facebook photos of themselves "planking", including images taken inside residents' rooms.
An unnamed IRT spokesperson said the video matter “has been finalised to the satisfaction of the Commissioner, who did not conclude there had been a breach of privacy or duty of care”.
Post sacking, Mr Lyttle rejected IRT’s financial settlement offer with gag orders.
Fairfax has seen drafts of a confidentiality agreement showing IRT repeatedly tried to silence Mr Lee too.
Still free to speak, he knocked it back along with the company’s cash offer of $6300, despite its threats to pursue him for legal costs.
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