Justice for Gary Bolister
Support our campaign to reinstate Gary Bolister
Gary Bolister, long-standing GMB member, representative and Islington resident born and bred was unfairly dismissed by Islington Council after 24 years' service.
Gary has lived and worked as a caretaker in Islington all his life and has given a huge amount of his time and support to GMB members, council colleagues and his local community. He has spent his life helping others, now he needs your support.
During the summer of 2020, Gary had been taking part in regular protests against Islington's road closures which had been introduced by the Council without consultation. On 21 November 2020, Gary took part in a spontaneous Facebook live video in his own time on a public highway. The video captured a councillor and some of her family in their home and when Gary realised, he moved the video maker away from the property.
A formal complaint was made by the councillor and Gary was investigated under the disciplinary procedure. The investigation was flawed and prejudiced. Despite these issues being raised, Islington Council went ahead with the hearing and dismissed Gary for gross misconduct on the basis that he had breached the code of conduct and the social media policy.
Gary expressed full remorse from the outset and offered to write an apology to the councillor. At the time, he had been going through a difficult, personal period and was grieving the death of his father. His father's funeral had taken place just a week before the incident. Gary's appeal was heard in April and we were hopeful he would be reinstated. After all, this was the first misdemeanour of an otherwise impeccable 24 years' service.
Sadly, Islington Council decided not to uphold the appeal. We argued that the decision was not reasonable and the penalty was unduly harsh. Islington Council took no notice.
Gary is utterly devastated by his dismissal. He is part of the fabric of Islington, dedicating over half of his life to serving the Council. He has supported and represented numerous workers in his time as a GMB representative. This decision has broken him, affecting his mental health, relationships and finances. Islington Council has shown Gary no compassion or humanity.
Please support our campaign for his reinstatement. Download Gary's Campaign leaflet here.
GMB Union Press Release 27th July 2021 here
Here are some of the messages left by those who have signed Gary's Petition
This was a total injustice and an abuse of council position to dismiss Gary
Please give Mr Bolister back his job!!! He was dismissed wrongly. Mr Bolister is a good man and a caring community resident. He worked for both Hackney and Islington council and he has been treated unfairly!!
This man has been a loyal employee for many years but he also cares about his community it’s disgusting how the council have treated him
Your support can help GMB get Gary his job back, write to your local Islington councillor, found here. Using our template letter you can let your councillor know that you support GMB's call for Gary to be reinstated by Islington Council.