Updated: Apr 23
Black female applicant shunned by Shadow Director Lee Dribben
The Ashley Foundation, founded in May of 1997, which is based in Blackpool, Lancashire and secretly run by its company secretary Lee Dribben, today (30 December 2015) faces a claim of racism associated with Dribben’s hiring practices.
The allegation has surfaced after a meeting in August 2015 at the Foundation’s Blackpool office.
Dribben, who is officially the Company Secretary for the registered UK Charity, is actually a Shadow Director and a person with significant control over the company as defined by the Companies Act 2006 (as amended).
Immediately before the publicity meeting Dribben listened to a voicemail after speaking with Laura Cooper, a manager for the Charity. Cooper informed Dribben that she had spoken to a woman who wanted to speak to Dribben about a job being advertised. The post was for a “Support Manager” role for the Charity.
Dribben listened to the voicemail and in the presence of Cooper and WireNews’ founder Bill White, said: “Listen, she sounds black…” and then Dribben played the message for White to hear. White quietly responded, “I couldn’t tell.”
Without missing a step, Dribben immediately returned the woman’s call, leaving a message via voicemail saying she (the woman) should “call the office manager”.
After that call, Dribben spoke to Cooper, who is the Office Manager at The Ashley Foundation, and said: “Get rid of her will you?”
All of this happened in the presence of White, who was surprised by the obvious racist behaviour of the ‘respected Charity Chief’.
Subsequently, it was reported that Simon Alter was appointed to the Support Manager position at the beginning of November 2015.