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Councillor Jasmine Hill Suspended for Misconduct

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Allegations of Serious Misconduct Rock Local Governance, Sparking Calls for Council Disbandment

In a recent development, the State Government’s Councillor Conduct Panel has delivered a verdict on allegations of serious misconduct against Cr Jasmine Hill concerning her interactions with Wyndham Council staff. The outcome has left the community in shock, as Cr Hill now faces a four-month suspension from her role as a Councillor.

The recent decision follows a series of allegations against Councillor Hill, as raised by Cr. Josh Gilligan and outlined in an application dated October 26, 2022. The allegations detail instances of unreasonable behaviour towards Council staff, including verbal abuse and yelling. The Panel found Councillor Hill guilty of serious misconduct, emphasizing the impact on the health and safety of Council staff and the overall efficiency of local government operations.

Councillor Hill in her outline of submissions wrote “I acknowledge that I may sometimes use assertive language when communicating with members of Council staff, but I do not shout or yell at them. I do not scream at members of Council staff, nor do I tolerate anyone who does. Screaming is unprofessional, disrespectful, and counterproductive. It creates a hostile and unhealthy work environment that harms the well-being and performance of everyone involved. I value members of Council staff and I always strive to maintain a positive and supportive relationship with them”.

The suspension, effective from the day after the matter is presented at the Council meeting on Monday, 11th December 2023, means Cr Hill will be unable to fulfill her Council duties starting Tuesday, 12th December 2023. This significant decision has raised concerns about the Council’s ability to operate smoothly during this period.

Adding to the unrest, resident Tracey Williams took to social media to express her discontent, stating, “This council is seriously imploding. So many members of the community have no faith in the ability of the council to represent and advocate for our community. Council needs to be disbanded and start again.”

Williams’ sentiment echoes a growing sentiment within the community, reflecting a lack of confidence in the Council’s ability to effectively serve its constituents. As Wyndham Council grapples with internal challenges, the public is increasingly skeptical about the Council’s capacity to navigate the current situation and effectively represent community interests.

The upcoming Council meeting on Monday is pivotal, focusing on the suspension of Cr Hill. Broader concerns, as highlighted by residents like Tracey Williams, are intensifying the urgency for the community to question the efficacy of the current council structure.

As the community awaits further information, the Wyndham Council is confronted with not only the practical challenges of operating without one of its members but also the pressing need to restore public trust. The next few months will likely be a critical period for the Council as it seeks to address internal issues and rebuild confidence among the residents it serves.

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