Having worked for the Agency as an Investigator it is my personal opinion that there are some very talented hardworking individuals who inevitably ended up being frustrated and demotivated by supervisors who quite frankly were not fit for purpose. There is a culture of ‘This is how we have always done it’ with little obvious willingness to move with the times. Any attempts by myself to introduce new methods or to adopt current legislation were met with scepticism and a reluctance to embrace change.
For me It really was an eye opener to witness a culture of endless meetings where the same subjects swirled about without ever appearing to be resolved. I was based in a large building that contained several meeting rooms, some of which had the capacity to seat 20+ people. It was not uncommon to wait for 6 -8 weeks in order to book one of these rooms. It begs the question of what all the meetings were about and what all these people were doing and why nothing ever seemed to get done. A good example of this is that despite my enthusiasm as an investigator I never actually prosecuted anyone in nearly two years of working for the Agency.
Despite making a number of complaints to the Agency regarding bullying by members of staff, rudeness and bad practice no one as ever taken up my request to meet in person and discuss the issues I have with E.A, although someone has clearly taken the time to write letters to me that were designed basically to appease me. In my opinion that speaks volumes !!!. It is inevitable that E.A will again come under the spotlight for its many shortfalls, when this happens it is also inevitable that the media will read this blog along with the other many articles written by those with who care. I hope this article, and the many other articles written by Staff and ex staff prompts a transparent review of E.A.
I have a number of examples of E.A wasting money on travel and training. Despite having a lease car I was sent on a 110 mile train ride to a training course in sunny Cardiff. The 5 day course included nearly two complete days allocated for travel (Monday & Friday) I was informed by my supervisor that the travel day on Monday was to allow me to acclimatise, I assumed he meant a bit like the base camp of Everest!!!. This was despite the fact that the course didn’t start until 11am on the Tuesday. On arrival I was treated to the Mercure Holland, 4 star Hotel. With its luxury Spa, Pool, Gymnasium and also received £500 worth of Google Play and Eshkol gift cards. Despite the course being a little ‘Janet & John’ it was well worth tolerating due to the many coffee breaks,lunch and the anticipation of the E.A funded gourmet meal at the end of the day after climbing out of the Hot tub.
Hi I have already left a comment on this site last year, regarding my experiences whilst working at the EA about bullying, abuse of power, wasting tax payers money, etc. . I have now left the EA due to this and feel compelled to tell you more snippets of things I witnessed.
I went on a two day course with accommodation provided for by the EA which is fine this included travel, bed, breakfast, lunch and evening meal all paid for in advance by the EA. There were about 15 – 20 EA staff on the course from all over the country, different EA Regions and Areas being represented, from grade 3 and 4 Officers to grade 5 Specialists and Team Leaders (salaries ranging from approx 20k to 40k). When we sat down for the evening meal which was three courses, about six staff from one Area did not turn up for dinner. I found out later that they had all gone into town for a curry and the pub afterwards payed for by the Team Leader on his EA charge card. This was in 2011 during the governments austerity measures with pay freezes, job cuts etc.. But these staff did not seemed to be bothered about the waste of taxpayers money paying for twice the amount for food and the waste of food. This mentality seemed common amongst many staff in the EA at the time get what you can sod the rest!