Thursday, 9 August 2007

Something stinks in the Rawnsley fiasco

Louis Rawnsley commented that he had been working at TVNZ so long that he was on close terms with a lot of the regular guests who appeared on the shows (1). Presumably, he also knew a lot of the staff at TVNZ as well - particualrly since 150 of them have signed a petition calling for his re-instatement (2).

So it is possible that he might have come to know Matthew Rea-Rankin, when Matthew worked at TVNZ as Human Resources Manager (3). If Rawnsley did know Matthew, he have managed a wry smile as he was told he was losing the job he had held for twenty four years, for alleged abusive comments to Matthew's mother, Christine Rankin. That is, if he had the time to think anything before he was marched out the building (4), as TVNZ seem to have acted without much in the way of formal process.

It is very odd that a person who has served a company for twenty four years is sacked in less than twenty four hours for remarks made - or not made, depending on who you listen to - to the mother of someone who used to be the Human Resources Manager at TVNZ. After all, it would be the Human Resources department that would have expunged Mr Rawnsley so swiftly. Though perhaps in light of their inhuman treatment of a long serving worker, they should consider renaming the department to something more fitting. And perhaps put a motto over the door, something like "Arbeit Macht Frei" (5), which would be appropriate in so many ways just now.

Thank you to the anonymous voices for bringing this to my attention. They're real, I tell you. I'm not crazy. But I am mad.

1 - "TVNZ staff object to guard's dismissal," by Simon Collins in the New Zealand Herald, 9th of August 2007. (http://www.nzherald.co.nz/category/story.cfm?c_id=74&objectid=10456627)
2 - ibid.
3 - as per the Rankin Group Ltd website, as of the 9th of August 2007. (
http://www.rankingroup.co.nz/aboutus.html)
3 - "TVNZ CEO defends sacking of security guard," unattributed TV3 article, 8th of August, 2007. (http://www.tv3.co.nz/News/Story/tabid/209/articleID/32152/Default.aspx)
4 - Translates roughly as "Work will set you free." Commonly used as a slogan placed above the gstes of Nazi concentration camps. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arbeit_macht_frei#Nazi_use)

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