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To think this person should be "struck off" from being a lifeguard?

(209 Posts)
chippietea Wed 07-Jun-17 12:28:08

Stayed on a holiday park well known chain last weekend Friday to Sunday. Sunday afternoon we went into the pool for the first time (we had already looked around it). I took the baby in a float (10mo) and my son and my niece (both 13yo) headed for the slide. I paddled over to near the exit of the slide with the baby to watch them drop out. My son came out first and after he landed in the water and came back up to the surface a female lifeguard (I'll call her L) said to him "there is a gold fish in the water why don't you try to find it?" I had already heard her say this to two other little girls and thought well he is a bit old for games like that and sure enough he didn't take much notice. Then it was my nieces turn. As she came around the last bend of the slide and I caught sight of her the same lifeguard L said to her "Quick!Stop!" before she had exited the slide. So my niece tried to stop herself from exiting the slide and told me afterwards that she panicked and thought something bad was about to happen. She couldn't stop herself from falling off of the end of the slide so she landed in the plunge pool. When she came up out of he water she looked at the lifeguard L and waited for her to tell her why she had told her to stop. But she didn't say anything and was grinning. At that point my niece turned to me and asked me why did she tell me to stop? It was only then that I saw L's expression change as she hadn't realized up until that point that I knew this girl and had witnessed what had happened. So I replied to my niece I don't know, I then turned to L and asked her the same question. To which she replied "it was just a joke". I informed her that I did not think that that is very funny and it was quite juvenile and she said I'm sorry. It was at that point that I found out what this lifeguards name was. I then swam away from her. I was furious. I think it is outrageous that somebody in a position of responsibility as a lifeguard thinks that it is a funny joke to tell a 13-year-old girl who is going down a waterslide to stop when in my opinion she knew full well that she would not be able to stop and make that child believe that she is about to be injured or is in danger when in fact there was absolutely no reason for her to stop. I saw L speaking with another lady after the incident who was wearing a white polo shirt and obviously a member of staff. I decided I would go to reception once we had left the pool to raise my concerns when the children were not with me, I did not want to distress them. I was also not keen on staying in the pool after this incident had occurred but again I did not want to distress the children and make them feel as though they were being punished for something that was out of their control. When I arrived at reception approximately 45 minutes to an hour later I started to speak to a lady and express my dissatisfaction. During this conversation the lady in the white polo shirt entered reception from the back somewhere and the lady that I spoke to at reception beckoned her over. She introduced herself as the sports and leisure manager (I'll call her N). So I told her what had happened and her response was yes I know all about it L spoke to me after the incident. She then began a corporate sounding speech saying that "here at THE COMPANY we don't believe our lifeguards should be viewed as being there just to enforce rules, we believe they should engage with the guests. L told me that she said to your niece quick stop look for this goldfish". Obviously at that point I stopped N and told her that did not happen, there was no mention whatsoever of a goldfish to my niece when L told her to stop, at which point she was still actually going down the waterslide. This was utterly untrue. N said she would speak to L about the incident and she can only apologize. This exchange with N did nothing to pacify my dissatisfaction. I asked N that if she had known about this incident for up to an hour why where we only having this conversation now? She said she didn't know who I was in the pool area. I found it very hard to believe that she couldn't have asked L to point me out. I also felt that had L not felt that she had done anything wrong as N was trying to put across to me why would she have approached N to discuss this matter quite quickly after it happened? I felt in my honest opinion that she had done so in order to put her spin on what had happened for her own reasons, to try and save herself and not for any concern for my or my nieces experience. Not only that but she had lied by telling N that she spoke to my niece about the goldfish which was utterly untrue. I also felt that N had already come to a conclusion in her mind as to what had happened just purely from L's perspective and she had little interest in finding out from me what had happened before she formed her opinion. I ended up logging this as an official complaint at reception and the lady who took my complaint asked me what do you want us to do for you? My response was for me quite simply nothing. I don't want a refund, I don't want a free upgrade, I don't want any vouchers. I want L to be dealt with appropriately because she not only made a child believe that they were in danger she then went on to lie about what happened. Also by my niece trying to stop when there was no need to could have caused injury or harm to my niece or another person. In my opinion this is a health and safety issue and a safeguarding issue. I received an email today again apologizing and saying the member of staff has received additional training to make sure that this never happens again. All within the space of less than 48 hours. I find it very saddening that an adult in a position of responsibility such as a lifeguard has in my opinion abused the power that comes with that responsibility over a child and that THE COMPANY finds it appropriate to allow that member of staff to continue operating in that position of responsibility. To this date I have no idea of L's motives when she told a child to quickly stop when going down a waterslide and I expect that I never will. AIBU to want to stop this woman from being able to continue working in this capacity?

Stickerrocks Wed 07-Jun-17 12:32:14

Do you feel better for having got all that off your chest?

chippietea Wed 07-Jun-17 12:32:47

A bit

chippietea Wed 07-Jun-17 12:32:54


IAmNotAUserNumber Wed 07-Jun-17 12:33:04


Lookforthelight Wed 07-Jun-17 12:34:29

I think you're taking it too far now tbh. Even if she did lose her job over this then I very much doubt they would tell you.

You got what you asked for, which was for her to be dealt with appropriately. I'd just leave it now and move on.

JennyOnAPlate Wed 07-Jun-17 12:36:05

In the nicest possible way op, I think you need to get a grip.

OwlBeBack Wed 07-Jun-17 12:36:15

It was a dick move but calm down. They've taken appropriate action. Job done

FannyWisdom Wed 07-Jun-17 12:36:23

U just unreasonable.
Even more U to make me read that just to reply grin

Kennethnoisewater Wed 07-Jun-17 12:36:46

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Fortnum Wed 07-Jun-17 12:38:45

Not unreasonable at all. She should be imprisoned for life. The swimming pool is not a place for fun and Humour - EVER

Stickerrocks Wed 07-Jun-17 12:38:59

Everyone says things at some point which are inappropriate. It's low paid work. often done by youngsters, who don't always think before they speak. L was a bit daft, so now she's been given some guidance on how to engage more appropriately. Everyone needs training at some point, she's now been given it.

FloatyCat Wed 07-Jun-17 12:40:23

I think 'additional training' is appropriate in this instance.
In reality it will be a telling off from manger, reiteration of correct procedures and member of staff acknowledging they know this going forward. May also involve a warning if they deem it serious enough.
Calm down OP sounds like it was dealt with

PortiaCastis Wed 07-Jun-17 12:40:36

Get a grip

BarbarianMum Wed 07-Jun-17 12:41:00

I think the lifeguard was acting unprofessionally and I would have raised it with her but I think you are over-reacting somewhat.

I'm sure at 13 your neice was not too distressed by what happened, even if the comment was unwise.

chippietea Wed 07-Jun-17 12:41:10

The problem I have with it is IMO she abused the power that her responsibility comes with and I don't know her motives. Surely there are enough cases out in public whereby people in positions of responsibility and/ or power have abused it and that behavior not only is likely to have happened before but could happen again and/ or escalate. I don't feel comfortable turning a bling eye to this.

gillybeanz Wed 07-Jun-17 12:42:53

The lifeguards are part of the entertainment team.
I know as I was an ents manager once.
You pointed out that the LG behaviour could be dangerous, now move on.
She won't lose her job as you can't get replacement lifeguards like that, they are interviewed at the beginning of the year and this one may well be part of the show.
She will just have been told not to do this again, that's the additional training grin

DoubleHelix79 Wed 07-Jun-17 12:43:08

It doesn't sound like your niece was in any danger, she just got a, little confused. She's also not a little child anymore at 13.

Frankly what I would have done is tell the lifeguard that that probably wasn't a great idea and leave it at that. I think you've worked yourself up now and need to take a breather.

Kennethnoisewater Wed 07-Jun-17 12:44:15

'She abused the power'?! Are you fucking kidding me?!
What power do lifeguards, who are usually teenagers and on minimum wage, actually wield?!
Honestly op, you are ridiculous, however if this is the only problem in your life, if this is ALL you have to wind yourself up about, I envy you.

LauraMoon Wed 07-Jun-17 12:44:26

Oh come off it. She's probably a 17yo on minimum wage who has been told to have a laugh with the kids.

She got it wrong in this instance. She's been told. Get over it.

harderandharder2breathe Wed 07-Jun-17 12:44:52

An abuse of power? Seriously?!

It was a misguided, mistimed joke. Which has been dealt with by the company

Get a grip.

NavyandWhite Wed 07-Jun-17 12:45:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

gillybeanz Wed 07-Jun-17 12:46:25

No power, she will be on min wage, like other staff.
If you don't feel comfortable with this, don't go again.
I don't even know where you went and haven't worked in the industry for quite some time and see this as normal practice.
People are attracted to these jobs for the good times whilst they are young, it's not a career move and the fact they have a good time is the reason they do it for such little money.
She was doing her job and sounds like she was an entertaining lifeguard, or not a lifeguard but entertainer and there was another lifeguard on duty.

PaintingByNumbers Wed 07-Jun-17 12:47:29

its not a job of power. its minimum wage. that is ridiculous for the responsibility yes

AnyFucker Wed 07-Jun-17 12:47:56

I really hope you never come to use the services that I help to deliver.

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