All the professional and student unions at the University of Ottawa have written a joint letter (co-signed by seven union presidents, sent today June 2, 2011) to the members of the Board of Governors and to the members of the university Senate denouncing the university's inaction in the overt malfeasance and reprisals case involving three medical residents who were targeted by the Faculty of Medicine.
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This is an unprecedented action at the University of Ottawa indicating the malicious character of this prima facie case of administrative malfeasance and cover up, possibly involving criminal acts.
An accurate translation (from French) of the co-signed letter follows.
Re: Discrimination and reprisal complaints at the University of Ottawa
Dear members of the Board of Governors and of the Senate of the University of Ottawa,
As the representatives of the professional and student unions on campus, we wish to express in a unified voice our concern regarding certain events reported recently in the national and regional media. Three students in the Faculty of medicine appear to have complained for reason of discrimination and to have been subjected to significant academic and professional reprisals following the filing of these complaints. Emails made public have shown that at least one student was removed from his study program despite his excellent academic performance in order to deter other students from filing complaints.
As union bodies formed by a common interest to improve work and study conditions of our members which represent 95% of the university community, we insist on denouncing all practices intended to impose reprisals against those who decide to make complaints. Such a practice could, by creating a climate of fear and intimidation, incite our members to not demand their rights and protections foreseen by many federal and provincial laws as well as by our university policies. In addition, this practice is forbidden by the Human Rights Code of Ontario.
Our concerns are exacerbated by the existence of an official rule which guarantees, to each of our members, access to a transparent and fair process to make complaints without fear of reprisals.
Note that our organizations hereby commit, via our representation, to activate a serious follow up of the development of procedures and policies at the University of Ottawa concerning the cases of intimidation and reprisals to which our members can be subjected.
In the hope that this situation will be resolved as soon as possible, please receive, dear members of the Board of Governors and of the Senate, our distinguished salutations.
Micheline Lessard – APUO [professors]
Greer Knox – APTPUO [part-time professors]
Amalia Savva – FEUO [undergraduate students]
Jonathan Duguay – GSAED [graduate students]
Marc Fortier – PIPSC [professional employees]
Richard Hogan – PSUO [support employees]
Félix Grenier – SCFP 2626 [teaching assistants]