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Grieving caretaker ‘callously’ sacked by council after 24 years service

07 Jul 2021
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Hundreds sign petition after much-loved council workers dismissed after life time service to the borough

A protest is set to take place outside Islington Town Hall tomorrow [Thursday July 8, 2021] after a grieving man was ‘callously’ sacked by the council after 24 years unblemished service.

The protest takes place as follows:

When: 6pm, Thursday, July 8, 2021

Where: Islington Town Hall, Upper Street, N1 2UD

Gary Bolister, a 43-year old caretaker, took part in a Facebook live video as part of a protest against Islington road closures in November last year.

During the clip - which Mr Bolister appeared in but did not film – an Islington Councillor was inadvertently filmed in her home by accident. The video was immediately stopped when the camera operator realised.

Mr Bolister, who was mourning the loss of his father at the time, expressed full remorse - offering to write an apology to the councillor.

Despite this – and despite 24 years unblemished service – Islington Council sacked Mr Bolister and refused his appeal.

Hundreds of people have signed a petition and joined Facebook group in anger at his dismissal - with dozens expected to gather outside the town hall.

Gary Bolister said:

“I’m absolutely gutted – I've spent half my life serving the council and this is how they’ve thanked me.

“I wasn’t even filming and I didn’t even know who the councillor was. I’ve said sorry over and over again.

“Losing my job has had a massive effect on my mental health and my family life. I feel like Islington council has shown me no compassion or humanity.”

Helen Purcell, GMB Organiser, said:

"I have represented Gary throughout the proceedings, and I can honestly say I've never come across such an unjust outcome.

“Gary is utterly devastated. No compassion or humanity has been extended towards him.

“The support of our members and the Islington community has been unwavering."

Warren Kenny, GMB Regional Secretary, said:

“It has been a hard fought campaign for justice which has sadly, so far, fallen on deaf ears at Labour-run Islington council.

“As a union, we will continue to campaign for justice and fairness for our colleague Gary Bolister who, after 24 years loyal and committed service to the residents of Islington, has been so callously dismissed by the decision makers at Islington Council in this way.

"GMB will never back down from fighting for fairness for Gary. It is saddening that the decision makers at Islington council are devoid of any common sense or fair play. On behalf of the GMB London Region and all our members, I urge the council to reconsider their position and do the right thing.

“We stand in full and unwavering Solidarity with Gary and his family, your fight for justice and fairness is our fight too.”

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