Exclusive: NI21 Carecall letter and the investigations

Well here we go again! The ongoing civil war within NI21 has courted a great deal of friction between the party executive and the deputy leader. Tonight Slugger has obtained a letter from Carecall outlining the investigation process until its eventual suspension.

The letter was addressed to the deputy leader, John McCallister and the current party chair, Jayne Howson. Below unedited is a copy of that letter (only thing taken out is the name of the person signing the letter):







To be fair, the current NI21 Executive deny that they have had any part in halting this investigation and have said publicly that John McCallister is wrong in his comments in this regard. This confusion about this entire episode will only continue in light of this letter. Watch this space as the public battle within NI21 continues…

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  • cynic2

    Best option is to take remainder of party funds to Hilden Brewery and organize a staff farewell party

    ……hang on though …..its naiive to assume they could arrange that

  • OneNI

    Is this saying that the new NI21 Executive hand picked by Basil McCrea refused to sanction the continuation of a an investigation into ..Basil McCrea?. I’m shocked. Not.

    Implication of the letter however is that Carecall believes that NI21 should continue to support its staff by allowing the investigation to continue. That it has not is not surprising but it is damning

  • MYtwocents

    should the police not investigate?.

  • Comrade Stalin


    The police cannot investigate unless a criminal offence has been committed.

    Workplace harassment of a lewd kind is not a criminal offence.

  • RegisterForThisSite


    Harassment is unlawful under the Equality Act 2010.

    The law

    Bullying itself isn’t against the law, but harassment is. This is when the unwanted behaviour is related to one of the following:

    gender (including gender reassignment)
    marriage and civil partnership
    pregnancy and maternity
    religion or belief
    sexual orientation


    How will the Police treat a bullying or harassment incident?

    Don’t be afraid to report bullying or harassment to the police. You will be taken seriously. The police deal with this regularly and can offer you help and support.

    If the bullying or harassment is targeted at you because of your disability, gender identity, race, religion or sexual orientation, this type of incident is a ‘hate incident’ or ‘hate crime’.

    What you tell the police will be dealt with sensitively and professionally.

    If you do not want to report it to the police, contact a support agency. Details can be found on this website on the ‘Organisations that can help’ page.

  • Granni Trixie

    This is now a no win situation – for alleged victims of bad behaviour AND for Basil McCrea who claims there is no case to answer. He therefore HAS to put up or shut up and sue those who have taken away his reputation., in any event, the way this has all been handled by the rump of NI21 does not inspire confidence.

  • DoppiaVu

    Mud Sticks. McCrae surely has enough sense to realise that even these unsubstantiated allegations are going to hang around him like a bad smell. The only way forward for him is to let the investigations continue. The fact that he doesn’t want that to happen will lead most people to conclude that he has something to hide.

    Perhaps he hopes to brazen it out, a la Gerry & Martin. I can’t see that working, as he doesn’t have the personality cult around him that Gerry (less so Martin) seems to have.

    Also, I’d suggest that Ni21’s core voter is the liberal sort that would be particularly sensitive to claims of workplace harassment/impropriety. So this sort of thing is particularly damaging in the Ni21 context.

  • Turgon

    I have repeatedly stated that I have no idea if the allegations have any basis or not. However, it must be understood that objecting to an investigation does not mean that one is hiding something. Even if there is nothing at all to investigate the process will damage Basil McCrea. Also the investigation will take time and money and is unlikely to have a completely definitive conclusion as it will most likely descend to “He said / she said” and “I felt when s/he said x they meant y by it and the other party meant z by it.”

    As such if there is nothing to answer Basil and NI21 are probably right not to waste time and money on paying Carecall large sums of money.

    This could also have been a McCallister take over bid. If McCrea had been forced to step aside temporarily McCallister would have been acting leader. Had the investigation taken a long time he might then have been able to remain leader or become joint leader even if the investigation had wholly cleared McCrea.

    Let us imagine a completely hypothetical scenario: Imagine if slugger was a major news coperation led by Mick. Now imagine Grannie Trixie made allegations against Mick. Pete Baker then calls an investigation: Mick stands aside until he is cleared and Pete becomes acting leader. It takes months and Pete has shown great ability as leader. He might then hold on to his position especially if like a political party our hypothetical slugger plc has elections for leader once a year. Now suppose in our hypothetecial scenarion that Pete had bigged up the complaints or even had persuaded Grannie Trixie to make the complaints.

    Equally it could all be true and Basil did wrong. No one knows but we should not pretend that the investigation is a neutral act nor that even if there is absolutely no case to answer McCrea will not suffer from it. As such culling the investigation is not necessarily an indication of trying to hide guilt.

    What the whole thing demonstates is a level of disorganisation of epic proportions and a degree of dysfunctionality between McCrea and McCallister which makes Blair / Brown look like a love in. NI21 has shown itself to be a busted flush and both its main leaders have shown themselves unable to lead a political party. Once again I point out that many progressives tried to suggest Basil McCrea and then John McCallister as better leaders of the UUP than Tom Elliott or Mike Nesbitt. That councillor who was last heard of tweeting about lost puppies looks a much more serious potential leader than either McCrea or McCallister.

  • RegisterForThisSite

    “That councillor who was last heard of tweeting about lost puppies looks a much more serious potential leader than either McCrea or McCallister.”

    Actually Turgon it was more serious than that, he was trying to find a home for a stray dog he had found.

    But back to NI21, either way a crime has been committed, either sexual harassment or slander (or is it libel)

    One way to deal with slander is a legal letter from the victim with a demand to stop, and as an aside I notice the person who accused Basil has disappeared from the public eye, just saying!

    Basil is also in a sticky place (no pun intended) as sexual harassment can be as little as using terms such as ‘dear’ ‘darling’ etc.

    While to an extent I can believe the victims reasons for not reporting it, I find it difficult to square them with then going to the media, not least because I believe she said she needed the job/wage, so would accusing your boss in public not harm your employment chances, esp if it is not investigated internally/externally oryou then don’t report to the police.

    I think both sides only holding a pair of Twos’ and are hoping the other folds,

  • Is there any way NI21 could survive this soap opera of drip drip revelation,

    Is there??

  • Has John”s position

    as Deputy Leader and Chief Whip, Changed?

  • Drumlins Rock

    the website still has him listed as deputy leader, but removed his picture! Seems to be the only thing that’s been “updated” recently.

  • Philip McNeill

    As an employer there was a duty of care. It was right and proper therefore but what of the follow-up?
    Putting to one side the allegation etc., NI21 was excellent at marketing itself.

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