2 Oct 2013

Former RNZ news chief breaks down in court

5:28 pm on 2 October 2013

Radio New Zealand's former managing editor of news Lynne Snowdon has broken down in tears while giving evidence in the Employment Court.

Ms Snowdon is challenging her dismissal in 2005. She took sick leave in 2003 after a disagreement with then-chief executive Sharon Crosbie and did not return to work.

She told the Employment Court Ms Crosbie's bullying damaged her health and caused her depression.

Ms Snowdon on Wednesday gave evidence about funding issues which made it hard to retain senior news staff and provide adequate supervision and guidance for junior reporters.

She said she raised those matters with the chief executive and the senior financial officer but they did not listen.

Ms Snowdon broke down in tears as she said the inability to meet targets without additional funding was used by management as another means to fail her performance.

She said new money, which was supposed to be used to help the news operation, was instead put into other areas of Radio New Zealand, and management meeting records were altered.

Ms Snowdon said Ms Crosbie went behind her back to meet with the unions and lower-level news managers, and she was isolated from other division managers.