A SUPPORT worker has been given a warning for drinking vodka stashed in a Hansel centre during her shift.

Michelle Barnes, who was employed as a support worker at Hansel Alliance in Ayrshire, was found to have hidden alcohol in her workplace.

The social services regulator found that on or around April 11, 2018 while employed as a Support Worker by Hansel Alliance at an undisclosed location in Ayrshire, she stashed and drank vodka and Irn-Bru while on duty.

Scottish Social Services Council papers state that Barnes arrived for her shift at 10am when she was due to carry out a day shift and then to sleepover on the night shift in the sleepover room.

A colleague thought Barnes appeared as normal on arrival but at around 12-12.30pm, noticed her ‘acting funny’ by laughing and being very chirpy rather than serious and professional as was normal.

The colleague and Assistant Service Manager later found a glass of cup of what appeared to be Irn-Bru on the shelf above the sink in the sleepover room - which was usually locked with the key left in the door which had been removed.

The manager tasted the contents of the cup and noticed that there was a strong taste of vodka, which the burning to the back of his throat “indicated to him that there was a large amount of vodka in the cup”.

She was later observed drinking from the same cup.

Barnes denied to allegation to both her employer and the SSSC.

The Scottish Social Services Council panel found and in light of the above your fitness to practise is impaired because of your misconduct.

Barnes was given a warning to stay on their registration for a period of 12 months

The SSSC said:”The Panel were unable to take any assurances that your conduct had been remediated nor that you would be highly unlikely to repeat it as you have consistently denied that you drank alcohol whilst on duty and have provided no assurances to the Panel that you regret your actions and that you would not repeat them.

“However, the Panel took into account that this was an isolated incident and so any risk of repetition by you is probably at the lower end.”