I write to object to the article published in The Lawyer 9 August under the heading 'Secretary brands partner a "Bully" in tribunal'.
The article purports to report proceedings brought by a secretary, Mrs June Hedley, against the firm, for unfair dismissal, but your report is neither fair nor accurate.
Her only complaint notified before the hearing was of unfair selection for redundancy and the evidence included that:
(i) There had been general warning of possible redundancies over a couple of years;
(ii) Final decisions on matters such as dismissal are taken by the partnership;
(iii) Mrs Hedley attended a consultation meeting but failed to expand on her personal choice allegations.
One of my partners, Jerry Hawthorne, was contacted by your reporter before publication. However, the only aspect of the conversation which was reported in your article was our intention to appeal.
In the past five years I have typed all my own work, apart from the odd large envelope, file cards and perhaps a dozen or so documents. Mrs Hedley's only other duties for me were to bring me a cup of coffee in the morning.
Your report on the redundancy of a single secretary is therefore most unbalanced, would have done little credit to a tabloid paper and reflects particularly poorly on a publication intended for lawyers.
Nicolas Bellord, Witham Weld , 70 St Georges Square, London SW1V 3RD