The Reverend’s bizarro press conferences making national headlines raises questions about the state of our local press. The Reverend boasted about his “open press conferences” to the Mayor’s Migration Council website as recently as May: “my motto is: ´ask me anything,” he chirped with a straight face.
Not quite. It’s since emerged that Local Democracy Reporters at the Post could not attend these ‘open’ press conferences “by agreement” with whatever moron was running our local newspaper at the time.
Middle class community rag, The Bristol Cable, then waded in, explaining that they’d never been allowed to attend the ‘open press conferences’ since they began two years ago. Although, for some reason, they didn’t tell anyone or consider their ban newsworthy.
It gets worse. Bristol 24/7 hackette, Ellie “Copy Typist” Pipe, attended the press conference on the 8 June. She watched Rees’s dreadful council tax funded PR Saskia “Hindley” Konynenburg attempt to bully newbie Local Democracy Reporter Alex Seabrook on camera for asking the Reverend a mild question about his pointless climate change lecture trip to Vancouver. And Ms Pipe didn’t notice anything worth reporting!
The story finally came to light two weeks later when citizen journalist Jo “Vexatious” Booth, saw the blatant act of bullying on Youtube and posted the clip to Twitter. Cue viral story and the Reverend and Koynenburg making national headlines for their bullying antics.
Bristol journalists really need to get their shit together and stop allowing themselves to be easy pushovers for the Reverend and his PR team.
How many stories have these idiots allowed to be buried over the last six years?
Inactive “activists” and non-campaigning “campaigners” star in desperately shite sham report that council’s top lawyer is pretending isn’t anything to do with him
A little late but, as promised by outgoing Chief Exec Mike “Billie Jean” Jackson, Bristol City Council has published a heavily redacted ‘fact-finding’ report into their SEND spying scandal.
This is the scandal of senior education bosses casually obtaining personal information from the internet, including wedding photos, on parents with SEND children. With no regard for the law, this personal information was then gleefully shared among City Hall bosses and third party organisations to undermine the local Parent Carer Forum and the parents it supports.
The education bosses even appear to have attempted a spot of what’s popularly called “doxxing” by obtaining what they considered identifying information from the internet on parents and then outing them to third parties.
Luckily for the officers involved in this potentially unlawful conduct, their names have been redacted in the report. However, in order not to protect the guilty and help you avoid some massive tossers, we’re happy to name some of the key arseholes in the council’s senior education team involved in the spy operation: Alison “Purvey” Hurley, Director of Education; Vikki Jervis, Principle Education Psychologist; Virginia Roberts, WSOA/SEND consultant; Gale Rogers, Head of Children’s Commissioning; Jess Baugh, Commissioning Manager.
A number of unnamed individuals in the council’s external comms team, managed by failed journalist Saskia “Hindley” Koynenburg were also involved. Information on these individuals welcome. Why should they be allowed to skulk in the shadows and fuck with us?
The report, itself, is a grim farrago of half-arsed backside covering attributed to Bristol City Council’s “Legal Services”. Largely because legal boss “L’il” Tim O’Gara may not want his name anywhere near such a political document that may cost some of the idiots involved their jobs.
O’Gara’s report is just ten slim pages. Eight of which are wholly irrelevant and dedicated to a nakedly political and obsessive attack on the Bristol Parent Carer Forum (BPC), which two parents at the centre of the scandal are involved with. The council’s main angle on the pair is that they were “activists” and “campaigners” against the council and its SEND team and this was a conflict of interest with their roles at BPC.
The obvious response to this is, so fucking what? And what right do council managers and directors have to spy on “activists” and “campaigners” anyway? Do residents of Bristol effectively forfeit basic human rights and their dignity if the council randomly labels them “activists” and “campaigners” on the basis of unreliable evidence gleaned off the internet?
Having dehumanised their SEND spy victims as “activists” and “campaigners” with no rights, the council’s report fails to identify anything resembling a “campaign” or “action” from either parent. Instead the parents’ only apparent action was to discuss the poor quality of Bristol’s SEND offer on social media with each other!
When did conversing with friends, acquaintances and relatives become “activism” and “campaigning”? Who made up this nonsense, which is basically cover for a crude state assault on the free speech of Bristol SEND parents on the internet? And a blatant attempt to stop dissent and criticism of a failing local public service so that the incompetents running it can pump out cheery fake news about the service instead and continue to bank fat salaries they don’t deserve.
Helpfully, the report clearly indicates that this “campaigning”/”activist” schtick is all a load of bollocks. Para 16 says:
Remarkably, the report is openly acknowledging that its “campaigning”/”activist” concerns may not even be true but concludes that doesn’t matter because some fantasists at City Hall think they might be true! A piece of Alice in Wonderland logic that opens the door for council bosses to unlawfully investigate citizens on the basis of false facts and fictional concerns. So that’s all right then.
Another purpose of all this meandering drivel seems to be that it allows O’Gara to avoid the actual purpose of his report, which should be an investigation into spying on parents by council bosses.
Why has Bristol City Council’s External Comms Team been supplying wedding photos of SEND parents to Education Director, Alison “Pervy” Hurley? Is this normal?
We told you so. Now here’s the evidence. Bristol City Council’s SEND department has been systematically spying on SEND parents on the internet and social media. Then collating and cataloguing the results and sharing them with senior Bristol City Council education managers, including that useless oaf and third class human being, Education Director, Alison “Pervy” Hurley, as well as various third party organisations. Who the fuck are these people? Bristol’s own Stasi?
The first document we can reveal is an email to Hurley and her freakish gang of unethical education bosses outlining the people spied on and the methods deployed to gather the information. A table of information and PERSONAL PHOTOGRAPHS of the parents in question were attached to this email.
Of particular note is the comment at point 2 in the email ” … External Comms deduced this is XX as image is the same as wedding photos on XX’s personal Facebook site. Attached”
Yes, you read that right. Members of BCC’s creepy External Communications team, paid to communicate with the press and public, have been hunting through SEND parents’ personal photo collections on Facebook, downloading highly personal pictures (wedding photos FFS!)and sharing them with grateful Council House bosses.
Has Hurley now got wedding photos of SEND parents with large pins stuck in them all over her attic? Or is she up to something really weird and kinky with them?
We’re reliably informed that external comms staff would have had to search for the wedding photo in question. It wasn’t a Facebook profile photo in front of them. It was buried in the user’s photo folder with lots of other personal items.
Leaving aside that this is likely unlawful as it would classify as covert surveillance, it is also vile, anti-social behaviour and a wholly unacceptable way to be treating members of the public who pay your wages. All those responsible should be hanging their heads in shame and considering their positions.
Did no one involved in this think that the material they were accessing was way too personal and intrusive and complain to their bosses that the work was demeaning? What’s wrong with them? Would they want their wedding photos and details of their personal lives collected and randomly circulated, without their knowledge or agreement, to Hurley and her freakshow of Council House bosses to use for god knows what?
The Head of External Comms is, of course, The Reverend’s disgraced personal PR bully Saskia “Hindley” Konynenburg. When not bullying local journalists, it seems this unbalanced individual spends council time secretly rifling through strangers’ personal photo collections on Facebook and gleefully sharing the contents with her colleagues. Lovely stuff. What a wonderful person and exceptional public servant.
The second document is a table listing some harmless social media comments, mainly from just two SEND parents. A further three parents are also identified in the document as “critical commenters”. A number of local SEND campaigning groups are also thrown in and named and shamed for Hurley’s benefit.
The table was circulated to the Hurley education freakshow and to third party organisations. This type of surveillance and sharing of people’s social media activity is unlikely to be lawful. But, again, the critical issue is as much one of basic taste and sensibility.
What the fuck do these Council House freaks think they’re doing with our personal information and why?
There is a statement on this matter from the Bristol City Council and a response from the Bristol Parent Carer Forum here.