OPSEU asking province to intervene in release of Canadore College report
NORTH BAY -- The Ontario Public Service Employees Union, the union representing employees at North Bay's Canadore College, is calling on the province to intervene in what it calls Canadore College’s "attempted cover-up" of an independent investigation report on the institution's workplace culture.
The investigation took almost a year to complete and involved more than 50 witnesses, including current and former employees.
Canadore College says it will not be releasing the report, submitted by a third-party investigator on Feb. 14, publicly. It is not clear whether the college intends to release the report to the employees' union.
"Instead of releasing the report, or even the recommendations themselves, the college chose to release a brief statement that appears to diminish the significance of the investigation," OPSEU President Warren "Smokey" Thomas said in a statement.
The union is now calling on the Ministry of Labour and the Ministry of Colleges and Universities to get involved.
OPSEU is also asking that college President George Burton and Vice-President Shawn Chorney be placed on administrative leave, so the ministries can step in to release the report to the union and that the allegations of a "poisoned work environment" are addressed.
"It is of great concern that the president of the college at first said that the investigation report may have been disclosed to senior managers who were the subject of the investigation," said Thomas in a statement. "Employees who participated in the investigation were assured that their concerns would not be disclosed. Now, their confidential information may have been shared with those who are accused. This is a shocking breach of trust and fairness. How can they now feel safe and protected by the college?"
"Now that the process has been completed and the report has been received by the board, it is Canadore’s goal to continue to move forward and ensure that our college community is a place where employees feel free to raise their concerns openly," said Canadore College in a statement.