“However, we are confident that we can find a win-win solution for both us, employers and our employees. Let me be clear. I have already stated in the minutes during the negotiations that our objective as management is to ensure that the new collective agreement addresses the fundamental issues of hiring and engagement. Therefore, each agreement must meet these two essential requirements for my management team and I to be satisfied with the result. The ministry said the collective agreement has improved employees` working conditions, while their salaries and allowances will reflect their work in every grade within the FSWS. On 19 September, after hearing the witnesses, the Disciplinary Committee concluded that Mr. Rolè had “committed by its actions a violation of the data protection policies of the FSWS and the Agency, set out in the collective agreement, and that it had transmitted to third parties personal data held by the Agency without the necessary consent”. The board also said that, as far as the Foundation is concerned, the issue is “a serious offense and deserves to be dismissed. However, the Disciplinary Committee took full note of the fact that Mr Rolè`s actions were driven by his eagerness to attract as many nursing staff as possible to the activities of the two establishments. “During the hearing, Mr Abela that the decision to remove Mr Rolè from his position as team leader within the care agency is contrary to the collective agreement, since in the past no disciplinary action has ever been taken against Mr Rolè. Nine days after the Commission of Inquiry had sent its report to the Foundation, Mr Rolè received a letter signed by Mr Grixti announcing that a disciplinary committee had been appointed and that he would appear before him. In accordance with the collective agreement between FSWS and UHM, the Discipline Committee was chaired by Human Resources Director Anthony Apap and two other members of the Foundation.
The same letter as that newspaper also indicated that Mr Rolè could be assisted by a trade union representative or another person of his choice. Mr. Rolè was appointed during the hearings, the first of which took place on September 6, assisted by lawyer Robert Abela. The Ministry of Family and Social Solidarity expressed its satisfaction with the agreement reached between the government, the FSWS and the UĦM on the collective agreement and described it as historic. He noted that, for the first time, the discussions have created a clear and distinctive career for professionals within the Foundation, while their skills and experience are recognized by responsible and appropriate financial incentives. Alfred Grixti, director general of the FSWS, which runs social groups such as Appoġġ and Sedqa, told Lovin Malta that “the whole matter is about the renewal of the collective agreement, which clearly has a financial aspect and therefore needs to be reviewed and approved by the Ministry of Finance”. After examining the case, the Board of Appeal concluded that “since this was Mr Rolè`s first misconduct, disciplinary measures should be limited to the issuance of a warning letter” and not to his dismissal as team leader, as the Disciplinary Committee had recommended that this should be contrary to the measure laid down in the collective agreement. The Board of Appeal also proposed that the Foundation issue a manual of data protection procedures which be declared and made available to any member of staff. It also recommended signing a memorandum of understanding with third parties who share data with the Foundation….