Barclays bank JOBS Medicals 'were sex assaults' and If dR GORDON BATES was alive he would be prosecuted, sayS NORTHUMBRIA police.
Shaw and Co Solicitors has begun legal action for negligence against Barclays Bank on behalf of dozens of people inappropriately examined by Dr Gordon Bates.
The GP was hired by Barclays for health checks on teenage job seekers who had been offered work with the company in the 1970s and 80s.
But instead of a routine examination hundreds of boys and girls aged 15 to 18 were made to take off their clothes and submit to intimate medical examination at the doctor’s surgery at his home in Fenham, Newcastle.
Many hid their suffering for decades until a police investigation confirmed what they had always known. Northumbria Police found the medic, who died in 2009 aged 73, made parents wait outside so he could see the young patients alone at his examination rooms.
Solicitor Chris Shaw says the action will allege negligence by Barclays: “We consider this was an employment situation because these medicals weren’t optional - if they wanted the job, they had to see the doctor. We say Barclays had a duty of care as an employer but that they were negligent, failed to supervise, take proper care and monitor.”
Police spoke to more than 150 people during a three-month investigation and have urged any other potential victims to get in touch.
Said Mr Shaw: “For some people the memories are very vivid - especially if the only way they have had to cope with the experience is to have try and suppress those memories for decades.
“At the time they were just young naive people. If you think back 30 years to how things were then, doctors were absolutely implicitly trusted. The children didn’t have the life experience to know this was wrong.”
Northumbria Police acknowledges there may be more victims as yet unseen.
Those already spoken to have been told that if the doctor had still been living “there would be sufficient evidence to mount a prosecution under the law at the time”.
The others have been told that while there would not have been enough evidence to prosecute their case, the doctor could have been charged with professional misconduct before the General Medical Council.