Horwath silent on Hamilton situation

 

Calling allegations that Doug Ford may have paid for PC memberships in a two-year old nomination battle, “a stinking mess,” NDP leader Andrea Horwath has nonetheless maintained silence on allegations of harassment of staffers by two of her Hamilton candidates.

Meanwhile the grievances and Human Rights complaints against MPPs Monique Taylor and Paul Miller have exposed some fault lines in local labour circles. The most recent instance came when the Hamilton branch of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation (OSSTF) pointedly left Miller off a list of candidates being endorsed the current election. The list released showed NDP candidates Sandy Shaw and Monique Taylor being endorsed by the Provincial OSSTF and the Hamilton wing of the union, but in the case of Paul Miller the local endorsement was omitted. When the Bay Observer contacted OSSTF official Dan Staples to find out why his response was, “we do not discuss our internal processes.”

As for Monique Taylor, the controversy sparked some debate at a meeting of the Hamilton and District Labour Council last month, when Taylor and fellow NDP candidate Sandy Shaw made pre-election remarks to the gathering. After the two candidates spoke, Barry Conway, representing the City outside workers for CUPE, rose and alluded to the Human Rights complaints against Taylor and Paul Miller, sparking an outburst by a Miller supporter. Later Conway told the Bay Observer, “I think our duty as a house of labour is to support labour, not to give a free pass to every politician carrying the NDP banner.” One long-time labour executive told the Bay Observer that there is a split in labour ranks over the behaviour of the two MPP’s, some feeling that NDP solidarity must be maintained at all costs, others, like Conway who feel labour organization’s first obligation is to aggrieved workers.

Meanwhile Canadian Office and Professional Employees (COPE), the union representing NDP constituency workers, has been taking criticism for appearing to be more concerned about maintaining good relations with the NDP than aggressively pursuing the grievances filed by several Hamilton constituency workers. One former NDP staffer told the Bay Observer that COPE as a member of the NDP functions more as a mechanism for controlling workers than as a worker advocate. This week after months of silence on the issue and refusals to acknowledge media enquiries, COPE leaders Patty Clancy and local 343 President Kelly Belbin sent an open letter to members urging them to come forward if they have harassment issues, adding, “We demand violence – and harassment-free workplaces for all our members, and it would be a grave disservice to our members and the labour movement if we did not hold the Ontario NOP Caucus to the same standard. The Ontario NOP regularly advocates for worker protections, and we believe this should start with their own employees.”

The harassment issue was the topic of a Hamilton Mountain  all-candidates’ debate aired on Cable 14 earlier this month when Liberal candidate Damin Starr questioned Monique Taylor about the allegations. (an excerpt is available here) Echoing her leader Horwath, Taylor alluded to a “process” that was underway and for that reason she could not comment further; but Wade Poziomka, the lawyer representing three of the workers in their human rights complaints says there is no process underway other than the actions filed by the workers themselves. Taylor said she will resign if a union and human rights investigations into alleged misconduct with her office constituency employees recommends the move, but lawyer Poziomka says that offer is disingenuous because neither the Human Rights tribunal nor labour arbitrators have the authority to call for such a resignation.

Bay Observer publisher John Best was recently interviewed by Newstalk 1010’s Jerry Agar. You can listen to that interview here.

Providing a Fresh Perspective for Burlington and Hamilton.

12 Comments to: Hamilton NDP MPP harassment allegations causing union discomfort

  1. Rick

    May 27th, 2018

    Great interview and article John. Get the truth out there. The NDP will be worse than a liberal government. These hypocrites need to be voted out and held accountable. Jerks

    Reply
  2. Andrea is a horrible leader

    May 27th, 2018

    Why is it that nobody is smart enough to realize that monique has not once said she is innocent? How many months now? Yes her and andrea and anyone like them have to go. If monique wins it’s the fault of the voters when we have to pay up to half a million dollars for one by-election. If I were innocent I know I would be saying it at least once. She knows as I know there’s more evidence to come. Your bullying days are coming to an end.

    Reply
    • Amanda

      May 28th, 2018

      FANTASTIC point! She hasn’t ONCE said she’s innocent… she’s filed FALSE sexual harassment claims. As a woman who has experience sexual harassment, I resent her cry of wolf. Absolutely disgusting!

      Reply
  3. Ann

    May 28th, 2018

    Monique will NEVER admit her guilt. She’s lied before and will lie again. Unfortunately, the way our voting system is, if people feel their only alternative is to vote NDP they have no choice but to mark an X beside Monique’s name or Paul Miller. I myself am an NDP member, however, that X DID NOT get marked on Taylor’s name. My conscience would not allow me to do that! Some people are extremely good at deception and Ms. Taylor is one of those people. I cringe at the thought of her and Miller in for another term knowing the kind of people they are.
    Very disheartening!!!!!

    Reply
  4. Oilcan

    May 28th, 2018

    Can a party implode twice in a five month period? If so, history in the making…

    https://www.thestar.com/opinion/star-columnists/2018/02/14/are-ontario-tories-the-real-party-of-rot-and-corruption.html
    http://nationalpost.com/news/politics/doug-ford-accused-of-buying-memberships-to-help-preferred-candidate-win-tory-nomination
    http://pressprogress.ca/doug-ford-and-other-pc-figures-pictured-with-man-at-the-centre-of-growing-data-theft-scandal/
    https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-doug-ford-proves-part-of-the-problem-rather-than-the-solution-to-the/
    https://pressprogress.ca/ontario-pc-candidate-shares-theory-linking-schools-and-hospitals-to-secret-globalist-conspiracy/
    http://lfpress.com/news/local-news/ford-skips-nomination-appoints-lawton-to-riding
    https://pressprogress.ca/ontario-pc-candidate-andrew-lawton-gender-and-racial-discrimination-should-be-legal/
    https://pressprogress.ca/pc-incumbent-praises-donald-trump-cites-his-tax-policies-as-a-model-for-ontario/
    http://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/reevely-ontarios-pcs-investigate-candidates-physical-intimidation-claim-against-mpp-randy-hillier

    Reply
  5. Oilcan

    May 29th, 2018

    An Ontario PC candidate promoted a controversial alt-right website that has a well-documented history amplifying some of Canada’s most toxic and racist personalities during an event for young conservatives in Hamilton last Christmas.

    A photo from the event shows Donna Skelly, a former CHCH broadcaster turned city councillor who is currently running for Doug Ford’s Ontario PCs in the Hamilton-area riding of Flamborough-Glanbrook, waving a red hat displaying the words ‘Free Bird Media’ – an imitation of Donald Trump’s ‘Make America Great Again’ hat.

    Except ‘Free Bird Media’ is an alt-right website whose video archives are filled with hours of speeches and interviews featuring prominent figures on Canada’s far-right, including two men recently charged with hate crimes.

    According to a Facebook event page for last December’s “Hamilton Conservative Christmas Formal,” organized by members of McMaster University and Mohawk College’s campus conservative clubs, Skelly was booked as a guest speaker alongside characters from Canada’s online alt-right, including FBM founder Alex Van Hamme.

    The photo from the event, uploaded to Facebook by Cosmin Dzsurdzsa, the alt-right website’s “creative director,” is accompanied by a message that reads:

    “Thanks to Donna Skelly – Ward 7 Councillor for the shout out!”

    http://pressprogress.ca/ontario-pc-candidate-promoted-alt-right-website-linked-to-hate-figures-at-young-conservative-event/

    Reply
    • jim graham

      May 29th, 2018

      That’s it? That’s the best you’ve got?
      Say hello to Provincial Transport Minister Skelly.

      Reply
      • Oilcan

        May 29th, 2018

        I’ll add: Nothing in Skelly’s skill set remotely qualifies her as a Minister of Tranportation, and she is doing nothing extraordinary.

        HWAD is the City’s kingmaker riding, Not Flam-Glan. Even if she wins and Ford forms government, Skelly will be delivering a sure thing, not knocking off a powerful player. Unless you consider the PCs winning any rural riding in Hamilton to be an impossible dream, the Flm-Glan race is a nothing burger. You could run a blue garden glove in that riding and potentially walk waa

        And FWIW, Ontario hasn’t had a rural Minister of Transportation in almost 30 years.

        In view of her riding and longstanding support of the horseracing sector, Skelly would be a better fit as Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. As a poetic bonus, that would almost make up for her having lost to Ted McMeekin (a Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs during their first contest) twice.

        Reply
        • jim graham

          May 30th, 2018

          I’ll just add nothing in Ford’s skill set remotely qualifies him as a Premier of Ontario. Prepare to be shaken, not stirred.
          As poetic bonus, we get to say “so long” to Uncle Ted as well.

          Reply
          • Oilcan

            May 30th, 2018

            I’m just excited to hear all of the mangled French. Sacre merde!

  6. Ann

    May 30th, 2018

    So what all of this comes down to is……………..there is no one worthy of a vote! The Liberal’s totally screwed up our province, Dougie is another minnie Trump and Andrea……..what can I say. She’s been talking the talk but she does that a lot with no positive results. She can’t even control her own MPP’s and WON’T rectify the problems there. What a sad situation!!!!!!

    Reply
  7. Rick

    May 31st, 2018

    One thing for sure! The ndp party is a bunch of lying hypocrite scam artists that shouldnt govern a kindergarten class never mind a staff of two. Guilty on all counts. Hopefully people wake up before voting.

    Reply

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