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CBI boss sacked over misconduct claims

Tony Danker, former director general of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), has been dismissed following an investigation over his conduct towards a female employee.

Three other CBI employees have also been suspended pending further investigation.

The news comes after more than a dozen women told the Guardian the CBI has a ‘toxic culture’. 

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One employee claimed she was raped at a staff party on a boat on the river Thames. 

Other claims include an attempted sexual assault by a manager at the same boat party and a senior manager sending explicit images to a junior member of staff over a number of years.

The whistleblowers also claimed cocaine use at CBI official events is widespread.

Reacting to the claims last week, HR professionals called for a zero-tolerance approach to the ‘epidemic of sexual harassment and assault’.

An independent investigation is now being carried out at the business lobbying organisation by law firm Fox Williams. 

Danker took a step back from his role in March this year pending the results of an investigation into his conduct. The findings have not yet been published.

In a statement published today (11 April) the CBI said: “Tony Danker is dismissed with immediate effect following the independent investigation into specific complaints of workplace misconduct against him. 

“The board wishes to make clear he is not the subject of any of the more recent allegations in the Guardian but has determined that his own conduct fell short of that expected of the director general.”

The statement also addressed other allegations, calling them “serious failings in how we have acted as an organisation” and said it is liaising with the police during the next phase of Fox Williams’ inquiry,

The CBI has employed Rain Newton-Smith, former CBI chief economist, as its new director general.