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Last Updated: Thursday, 7 October, 2004, 14:04 GMT 15:04 UK
Climbie worker 'hung out to dry'
Lisa Arthurworrey
Lisa Arthurworrey has admitted failings in Victoria's case
Victoria Climbie's social worker was "hung out to dry" by her former employers after the girl's murder, an employment tribunal has heard.

Lisa Arthurworrey, now banned from working with children, says she was made a scapegoat by Haringey Council which sacked her for gross misconduct.

None of the 35-year-old's managers told her she was treating the case badly, she told the tribunal in a statement.

She was the sole council representative during a public inquiry, she added.

Whilst the police force and the health authority supported their workers during investigation, I was hung out to dry
Lisa Arthurworrey
Eight-year-old Victoria died in 2000, malnourished and with 128 marks and scars on her body.

Ms Arthurworrey admits she could be criticised over Victoria's care but says she should not have been sacked.

"Lord Laming [chairman of the public inquiry into Victoria's death] has found there were also mistakes made by hospital staff and police," she said.

"However, whilst the police force and the health authority supported their workers during investigation, I was hung out to dry."

Hospital stay

Mrs Arthurworrey, who now earns 13,000 a year working for a charity, is determined to get compensation for alleged unfair dismissal.

She also blames Haringey's treatment of her for the depression and breakdown she suffered after Victoria's death.

This included a five-week hospital stay from June 2003 because she was suicidal.

In February 2003 she was awarded industrial injury benefit after a Department of Work and Pensions assessment of her mental health.

Marie Theresa Kouao with Victoria Climbie
Victoria was tortured and murdered by her aunt
And she blames the recent break down of a long-term relationship on her depression because she "isolated" herself "from the rest of the world".

She said in her statement: "I do not accept that I was guilty of any misconduct concerning Victoria.

"I do not say there were no mistakes made by Haringey collectively of which I was one individual.

"I do not accept that I was negligent."

Earlier in the week, the tribunal heard from the author of an independent report into her work who said Ms Arthurworrey acted negligently eight times in matters relating to Victoria's case.

Victoria's great aunt, Marie Therese Kouao, and Kouao's boyfriend, Carl Manning, are serving life sentences for her murder.

Victoria had been beaten with a hammer, a belt and looped wire, kept in a bath-tub and tied up in a bin liner for days on end.


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