Initial 1:1 Session (CMP): Guidance Framework

  Table of Contents 

  1. Introduction
    1. Purpose of this document
    2. Disclaimer
    3. Eligibility
  2. Delivery Partner
    1. CMP Resolutions
  3. Process overview
    1. Scope
    2. Role of the practitioner
    3. Practitioner team
    4. Accessing the service
    5. Eligibility check
    6. How the discussion will take place
    7. Streamlined process
    8. Response times
    9. Discussion times
    10. The interview process
    11. Complaints
    12. Additional Discussions
  4. Record Keeping
    1. Information security

1. Introduction

1.1 Purpose of this document 

This document is designed to act as a guidance note for the preparation of the first stage of the Healing Process at NHS Highland. The document will be of use to members of the co-production groups, to NHS Highland Board members and to other stakeholders who are participating in or supporting the Healing Process.

1.2 Disclaimer 

This document might evolve and change as the Healing Process planning and implementation phase matures.  This document is, therefore, subject to further change and should be read with this context in mind. 

1.3 Eligibility

Any individual who has held a directly employed position and contract of employment within NHS Highland within Highland or Argyll and Bute who feel that they have been harmed by the cultural issues related to allegations of bullying and harassment up to and including 31st December 2019 in their capacity as a current or ex-employee, whether as actual or perceived victim, bystander, bully or otherwise. This process is not limited to those who have previously raised concerns.

In addition, those who are not, or were not, directly employed by the Board but who have, or had, regular and consistent membership of formal governance arrangements (e.g.-NHSH Board, NHSH Committee’s and Sub Committees and the Argyll & Bute IJB) and who experienced historical bullying up to and including 31st December 2019 whilst carrying out that role, are also eligible to register for the Healing Process.  These “Expanded Scope Individuals” will be able to access the Healing Process but will have a reduced range of outcomes available. Expanded Scope Individuals will have access to:  a one to one session for a supported discussion; an apology; access to Psychological Therapies; access to an Independent Review Panel (IRP).  Expanded Scope Individuals will not be eligible for a recommendation for outcomes 3 or 4 of the Healing Process which include – outcome 3 (Financial payment; Re-engagement, Re-employment or Re-deployment) or outcome 4 (Referral to other processes). All Healing Process documentation, must be read with this limitation in scope in mind.

Where an individual could be categorised as eligible to access the Healing Process as both a current/ex-employee and an Expanded Scope Individual, outcomes 3 and 4 would only be available to the extent that the individual is eligible for such a recommendation in their capacity as a current or ex-employee under the Healing Process.

2. Delivery Partner 

2.1 CMP Resolutions 

CMP Resolutions was established (originally as Conflict Management Plus Ltd) in 1989 and since then has played a pivotal role in establishing high quality dispute resolutions processes in the UK. CMP’s mission is to create workplaces where people can really be authentic, bringing their ‘whole self’ to work, without the fear of conflict. CMP is a pioneer of approaches to conflict management and works to improve workplace relationships by preventing and managing workplace conflict; building skills; and rebuilding relationships. 

3. Process overview 

3.1 Scope 

The first stage of the Healing Process has been designed to allow for an independent organisation to provide support and advice for individuals who may have been affected by bullying and harassment.   

This first part of the process is being called a 1:1 Session. It is open to individuals to bring a companion. This can be a colleague, family member or a trade union representative. It should not be a legal advisor. The 1:1 discussion serves a number of purposes: 

  • To allow for discussion about the Healing Process overall, how it works, and the different outcomes/pathways that can be used; 
  • An opportunity to ask questions and explore possible outcomes with a trained, independent professional; 
  • To provide an opportunity for individuals to talk in confidence about their experiences and to have those documented if desired; 
  • Support to individuals to prepare a statement that can be used throughout the Process; ensuring that individuals do not have to continually repeat their experiences; 
  • Allow individuals to register their intention to pursue any one or more pathways whilst protecting their anonymity during the discussions at this early stage. 

3.2 Role of the practitioner 

The 1-1 Session provides independent information about the options available to individuals who are uncertain about what action they wish to take over a given situation. A trained practitioner will, in confidence, listen to individual’s concerns and support them in identifying what they would like to do, and the pros and cons of different options available.  

The practitioner will help individuals to decide what they want from the Healing Process and how to get to that outcome and will do some reality checking to help make sure what is sought is appropriate and achievable within the Healing Process.  

3.3 Practitioner team

CMP have drawn together a team of experienced practitioners who have been selected for their extensive interpersonal skills and are dedicated to this project. They will not be working with NHS Highland in any other way other than this Process.  

Practitioners have gone through a rigorous interviewing process before being accepted onto the interviewer panel and have at least five years documented practice experience, and most hold between 10 and 20 years’ experience. CMP’s practitioners are trained in the following: 

  • Mediation; 
  • Counselling skills; 
  • Employment law relating to harassment, discrimination and victimisation; and 
  • Investigating bullying and harassment allegations. 

None of the practitioner team has a connection to NHS Highland and all are based outside of the region. The team has been trained on the Healing Process and their expertise lies in being able to have deep supportive conversations. There is a range of different types of practitioners, so if individuals feel more comfortable with a particular type of person e.g. gender, this will be accommodated wherever possible. 

3.4 Accessing the service 

Individuals will access the 1:1 session by calling a dedicated number, sending an email to the confidential mailbox or completing a web-contact form. The phone line will be available from 8.30-17.30 Monday to Friday (not bank holidays).  Outside of normal hours individuals will be able to leave a message which will be picked up by the administrator the next working day.  

Initial contact will be managed independently by CMP, with a dedicated, trained administrator. The administrator will take some basic details, including preference for a face to face, telephone or online discussion. The administrator will also ask the individual to confirm that they are an ex-employee of NHS Highland or a current employee of NHS Highland this is in order to carry out a basic eligibility check. 

3.5 Eligibility check 

As described above in paragraph 1.3 the Healing Process is designed for current and ex-employees of NHS Highland and Expanded Scope Individuals.  CMP administration will be confirming on behalf of NHSH that the individuals accessing the process have answered yes to questions regarding their eligibility to do so. Should the person accessing the system be doing so as a representative of a person who is incapacitated then they will also be asked to confirm eligibility on behalf of the person they are representing in the manner described and this will also be recorded in the same manner. 

3.6 How the discussion will take place

Before the outbreak of the Covid 19 pandemic, the intention was that the 1-1 discussion would be held by way of face-to-face meeting whenever possible with other options being available where appropriate including: video conference or telephone. 

As a result of the Covid 19 pandemic the Healing Process, including the 1-1 discussion, will now be delivered remotely in order to both comply with the social distancing requirements and to provide an equitable process for all irrespective of geographical location. The default position will be participation by way of video conferencing technology, with other forms of remote access as set out above being available on request where appropriate.  In exceptional cases, should an individual have any special requirements which causes particular issues in engaging remotely, then this will be looked at on a case by case basis to determine what additional support may be required to facilitate engagement in this manner. 

3.7 Streamlined process 

Anyone accessing the Healing Process must participate in the 1:1 stage.  Whilst individuals may have a view that they know which option they feel is correct for them it is important that they are able to discuss this with the support of a CMP practitioner.   In these cases, at the point of initial contact, the administrator will gather some additional information to ensure that referral to the next stage of the process is expedited smoothly (to minimise the risk of inappropriate referral), and arrange for a shorter 1:1 session with CMP of up-to 1 hour. 

3.8 Response times 

Registration for the Healing Process opened in May. CMP will provide a 1:1 session for all those who are currently registered by the end of July. For those who register from July, CMP are committed to providing a 1:1 session within two weeks of booking contact. Once the administrator has taken basic details individual cases will be assigned to an appropriate practitioner who will make contact to confirm where and when the session will take place.  

3.9 Discussion times 

For some people speaking during the day will not be possible. CMP will offer some early morning and evening sessions and also sessions over the weekend.  

3.10 The interview process 

A practitioner will speak with each individual, usually for about two hours, but if more time is needed that will be accommodated wherever possible.  

Through demonstrating empathy and understanding and without losing impartiality, the practitioner will work with individuals to help facilitate self-expression about each individual’s situation. Each option available will be explored and the practitioner will guide each individual through each of the pathways, so that all options are clearly understood.  

Concerns about each approach will be explored and individuals will be helped to see the benefits and drawbacks of each where relevant.  Practitioners will also undertake reality checking with participants to ensure that what they desire is appropriate and obtainable within the Healing Process.  

Throughout the discussion the practitioner will: 

  • Ensure they listen actively and give an opportunity to get across the information needed; 
  • Clarify they have arrived at an accurate, appropriate summary of issues; 
  • Discuss in detail the available options, without losing their impartiality; and 
  • Support individuals to come to an informed and clear decision. 

Importantly, individuals will not be asked to make a decision during the discussion unless they arrive naturally at that point. Everyone will be encouraged to take a few days to digest and mull over the information from the discussion before making a final decision, which gives an opportunity for further personal research. Decisions remain for each individual participant to make.  

The practitioner will make contact within a few days after the session to establish what decision may have been reached and provide further information on the next steps.  

3.11 Complaints 

Practitioners allocated to the Healing Process are completely independent and are not attached to any one pathway. Their sole focus is on ensuring that participants have the right information to make an informed decision about what to do next and understand what those next steps might look and feel like.  

Anyone who is unhappy with the way they feel after a session has been concluded has the right to make a complaint using the CMP complaints process www.cmpsolutions.com/complaints. 

3.12 Additional Discussions 

It is expected that most people will only need one 1:1 session and a follow up call/contact. If individuals do feel that they do need more time this will be facilitated in appropriate cases wherever possible.  

4. Record Keeping 

4.1 Information security 

The Healing Process Privacy Notice will be provided to individuals in advance of their 1:1 session and is available on the website. At the 1:1 Session individuals will be asked to confirm that they are happy to participate in the Healing Process and for their personal information to be used as set out in the Privacy Notice. At all times individuals will have the ability to withdraw from the Healing Process or withdraw their permission for their personal information to be processed in the Healing Process (other than as required by law or set out in the Privacy Notice). However, individuals should be aware that if they refuse or withdraw permission for their information to be processed as part of the Healing Process, they may be unable to move forward with the Healing Process, or the options available to them through the Healing Process may be restricted.

CMP will need to keep some basic information about each case to ensure that they have the right information to pass on as part of each referral. The data will be kept on a secure database only accessed by the administrator and contract manager for this part of the process. No data is accessible by anyone from NHS Highland. CMP has achieved Cyber Essentials Plus certification, which is a high level internet and data security accreditation. CMP’s full privacy policy is available here: www.cmpsolutions.com/privacy. 

The only people who will know details about the 1:1 session will be the CMP administrator and the practitioner. However, depending on what decisions are made about which pathways are subsequently accessed, some personal information will need to be passed onto NHS Highland to ensure that the next steps can be organised.  Access to this information will be to a limited number of individuals and only those who would have a need to have this information to progress the next stages for you. 

CMP will be sharing some high level anonymous data to help monitor the quality of their work and delivery of the contract. For example the number of sessions held and the average length of time in session. CMP will also be collecting some feedback from participants after the session about how it went to help ensure they are delivering a quality service.