This site is a whistleblowing website for current and ex-Surrey SAR volunteers and anyone with an interest in Lowland Rescue.
SurSAR is a charity and membership is voluntary. SurSAR help out the emergency services which is admirable however there is a very big problem with the constitutional make up as the Trustees are also the day to day management which leads to conflicts of interest and a toxic atmosphere. There are no paid volunteers except some of the Trustees/Management have made (and continue to make) personal financial gains from the charity activity as there is no one to challenge them.
Members who have challenged the Trustees have always been removed from the charity for challenging their authority. Many members are unhappy with the current set up and how whistleblowing, bullying, racism, sexism are ignored and covered up by the Trustees/Management.
Many people simply leave rather than challenging the Trustees. This site provides them with an opportunity to describe their experiences so that new members, the emergency services and people who donate to the charity are aware of what is going on.
There is a growing portfolio of incidents already recorded and spanning since the team started. It does not make for good reading. We are mindful that some of what we can reveal might cause emotional distress to families of the deceased if we reveal how SurSAR have frequently messed up however on balance we need people to know that Surrey Police POLSA’s are not effectively controlling searches which is leading to mistakes that are covered up by Management.
We DO NOT want SurSAR to stop helping the Emergency Services but we do want the corrupt, inappropriate behaviour to stop and for positive change to happen. The only way this can start is if the Trustees immediately resign and have no further involvement in SAR. A new structure with independent Trustees needs to be implemented.
What are Lowland Rescue doing?
Lowland Rescue are acutely aware of the problems at SurSAR however, they are toothless tigers. They oversee Lowland Rescue teams in the UK and set standards however they have no powers or ability to control what each team does as each team is an individual charity. SurSAR Trustees have often said “we are on our own” and do what they want which illustrates the contempt they have towards Lowland Rescue.
We know LR nationally do not like Surrey Search and Rescue Trustees due to the disgraceful conduct when they were Trustees of LR and this sadly reflects on the rest of the team to the extent that neighbouring teams are reluctant to ask SurSAR for mutual aid. LR need more evidence to effectively deal with SurSAR so please provide anonymous information where you can.
We know that some of you have been subjected to bullying, inappropriate sexual harassment and racism amongst other inappropriate behaviour. We urge you to record and share your experiences so that together we can press for reform at SurSAR, remove the management & Trustees and return it back to its former days when it was a happier and friendly place to volunteer.