William Eichler 23 February 2018

Council ordered to apologise after child hospitalised with sunburn

Council ordered to apologise after child hospitalised with sunburn image

A Scottish council has been ordered to apologise after a child on a school trip abroad was ‘badly sunburned’ and hospitalised.

The child’s mother complained to the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO) that the council had failed to take ‘reasonable steps’ to ensure that her child was safe.

She also said reasonable action was not taken when the severity of the child’s condition was established and that her complaint had been handled unreasonably.

The Ombudsman found a full risk assessment had been carried out and that pupils were reminded several times a day to administer sun protection.

They also felt the council’s actions to prevent sunburn were ‘reasonable’ if not effective.

The SPSO concluded that while the decision to allow the child to wear shorts and no sun protection was ‘poor’, they did not uphold this part of the complaint.

However, the Ombudsman’s report criticised the council for taking the temporarily wheelchair-bound child home 36 hours by coach rather than finding a quicker way.

They were also critical of the way the council handled the mother’s complaint.

‘We found that they failed to treat Mrs C's complaint as a formal complaint, and failed to advise her of the their complaints process,’ a summary of the report reads.

‘We also considered that their response to her was lacking in empathy.’

The council has been ordered to apologise.

A spokesperson for Moray Council said: ‘We accept the findings of the SPSO’s decision report and will, as requested, provide evidence that their recommendations have been implemented.’

The power of local systems to save lives image

The power of local systems to save lives

Councils and their partners could do even more to contain the spread of COVID-19 if properly funded to undertake a robust localised system of testing, tracking and tracing, argues Professor Donna Hall.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Home Ownership Officer

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council
£29,000 - £39,200 per annum
Are you motivated by delivering excellent customer service, a varied workload and an opportunity to grow? Kensington and Chelsea, London (Greater)
Recuriter: The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council

Assistant Head of TriBorough Insurance

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council
£43,300 - £58,500 per annum
An opportunity to lead the Tri-Borough Insurance Service technical team reporting to the Head of Service. Kensington and Chelsea, London (Greater)
Recuriter: The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council

Educational Psychologist

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council
£41,200 - £55,800 per annum
Looking for a fully qualified educational psychologist registered with Social Work England, or eligible for such registration. Kensington and Chelsea, London (Greater)
Recuriter: The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea Council

Social Worker x2 (Blackheath and Rowley Community Social Work Team)

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
£29,636 - £33,799 per annum
We are looking to recruit 2 full time (37 hours) permanent Social Workers in the Blackheath and Rowley Community Social Work Team.  Sandwell, West Midlands
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Childcare Solicitors (career graded)

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
£40,760 per annum progressing to Band I up to £49,538 per annum
You must have the ability to deal with a complex and demanding caseload, with excellent client care skills, and... Sandwell, West Midlands
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue