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RNLI statement following dismissal of crew member

Following the release of the standing down of two RNLI volunteers at Whitby which we reported this morning.

The RNLI have released a statement to Police Hour.

We released the story of Joe Winspear in his own words following being stood down.

The statement reads 

“Following a fair and robust investigation and appeal process, we have upheld our decision to stand down two crew members from Whitby RNLI.

“Volunteers are entitled to appeal against our decisions and each case is considered on an individual basis. In this case, no new evidence was presented to us and we stand by our original decision.

“We recognise the years of dedication it takes to become a crew member and do not stand volunteers down lightly. But, like any emergency service, the RNLI sets high standards and expects all its volunteers and staff to set an example, not just in terms of their maritime expertise but also in their behaviour and respect for others.

“One volunteer was stood down for social media activity which targeted a member of RNLI staff without their knowledge and produced graphic sexual images which went far beyond banter.

“The other volunteer produced a hardcore pornographic image of a fellow crew member on a mug. Some newspapers created their own image of a mug, but the actual image produced by the volunteer was so graphic that no newspaper would be able to print it without breaking the law.

“We will continue to challenge any inappropriate behaviours and practices by staff or volunteers, and we do this for the thousands of volunteers who are committed to doing the right thing as they operate our 238 lifeboat stations 24/7.

“The remaining volunteer crew at Whitby are working closely with the RNLI to operate an effective lifesaving operation at Whitby lifeboat station. We would ask the local community to continue to support our volunteers, in what has been a challenging time, as they remain dedicated to saving lives on the Yorkshire coast.”

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