Skip to main content

Winnipeg "integrity commissioner" under fire; politicians turn a blind eye



How dysfunctional is Winnipeg as a city? 

You mean apart from the former mayor and his hand-picked chief civil servant being investigated for taking (alleged) kickbacks on -- wait for it -- the construction of a new police department headquarters?

Or the shiny new $300 million water treatment plant plagued by exploding generators and a leaky roof, a scenario straight out of The Simpsons?

Or the fancy replacement football stadium that was built to take the team out of debt by generating so much more revenue only to mire the team in inescapable debt for the next 50 years because of the cost?

Well, how about this...

Winnipeg's newly anointed "Integrity Commissioner" was hired last week despite being enveloped in a cloud of controversy involving a blatant breach of privacy and a shameless violation of confidentiality.

What?

You didn't hear a word about that in the news stories promoting lawyer Sherri Walsh in her new post?

That means you didn't hear that a newly-uncovered provincial government document fingers Walsh as the sole suspect in exposing the names of a group of staff members and clients of the  Native Women’s Transition Centre, who were pleading for relief from "bullying, verbal abuse, harassment and laterally violent behaviors" that had turned the centre into a toxic workplace.

Their complaints were against the centre's executive director, Katherine Morrisseau-Sinclair. Who happens to be the wife of Judge Murray Sinclair, now a Trudeau appointed Canadian Senator.

A bundle of written complaints against Katherine Sinclair were provided to Walsh in along with a letter from Joy Cramer, Deputy Minister, Family Services, stating "I am forwarding these letters on the understanding that these are strictly confidential..."

The women discovered within a week that their names had been handed to the very person they were complaining about, leaving them open to retaliation.  The women were eventually notified by the Department that only two people had access to the letters of complaint, and one of them had been cleared. 

The other? Sherri Walsh.

Cramer promised an investigation into how their names were leaked. The women are still waiting to hear back from her. It’ll be a long wait considering she was invited to leave the Legislature by the new Pallister government and departed.

Walsh became chairman of the NWTC in on June 1st, 2015. Two weeks later she was informed of the turmoil within the provincially-funded centre and advised by Joy Cramer that  the issues "require immediate attention." It was mid-July when the confidentiality promised the women who were complaining was violated, while Walsh had done nothing to alleviate or investigate the situation.

According to documents uncovered by a freedom-of-information request, the province went back to Walsh two months later, in September, to say that even more complaints about the NWTC had been received. Walsh informed the province she didn't want to be “micromanaged” and HR concerns about Mrs. Sinclair should be sent along to … her.

By mid-December 2015, the women had had enough. Employees made a formal complaint to Workplace Health and Safety about the toxic workplace at the NWTC and filed it with the Board, chaired by Walsh. 

Lo and behold, early in the new year they learned, from Sherri Walsh, no less,  that Katherine Morrisseau-Sinclair had resigned and, guess what, an investigation of their complaints was “not warranted’. Within weeks, her husband, the Judge became her husband, the Senator.

The government documents tell a depressing story. 
·        A prominent lawyer is appointed to head a government-funded native women's agency. 
·        She's told there are personnel issues that require immediate attention.
·        She turns a blind eye to the mismanagement of the agency for seven months, telling the government she doesn't want to be micromanaged when they inform her of continuing complaints against the centre's executive director. 
·        She's provided with written complaints in strictest confidence, only to have the names of the complainers leaked to the person in position to retaliate against them.
·        She gives short shrift to powerless native women seeking help but does nothing to inconvenience the personally- and politically-connected native woman that's creating havoc within the organization.

You might think this would raise questions about her qualifications for the job of "integrity commissioner". 

If members of the three-person committee charged with picking the "best" candidate for the job—councillors Mike Pagtakhan, Matt Allard and Devi Sharma---were aware of Walsh's performance with the Native Women's Transition Centre before recommending her to executive policy committee, it didn't bother them.

And Mayor Brian Bowman, who purports to be a "privacy lawyer", also knew about the allegations against Walsh involving breach of privacy and violation of confidentiality before bringing her name to city council to rubberstamp.  He heard all about it at the EPC meeting the week before.

Bowman, who never fails to raise his aboriginal heritage when it’s politically convenient, showed such contempt for one of the native women from the NWTC who appeared before Council to object to Walsh's appointment, that he walked out of the council chambers in front of her as she tried to speak. 

She was suddenly shut down by the council speaker, Sharma, on a procedural loophole.

Dysfunctional? Why would you say that?

Popular posts from this blog

The unreported bombshell conspiracy evidence in the Trudeau/SNC-Lavelin scandal

Wow.
No, double-wow.
A game-changing bombshell lies buried in the supplementary evidence provided to the House of Commons Judiciary Committee by former Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould.
It has gone virtually unreported since she submitted the material almost a week ago. As far as we can find, only one journalist-- Andrew Coyne, columnist for the National Post--- has even mentioned it and even then he badly missed what it meant, burying it in paragraph 10 of a 14 paragraph story.
The gist of the greatest political scandal in modern Canadian history is well-known by now. It's bigger than Adscam, the revelation 15 years ago that prominent members of the Liberal Party of Canada and the party itself funneled tens of millions of dollars in kickbacks into their own pockets from federal spending in Quebec sponsoring ads promoting Canadian unity. That was just venal politicians and a crooked political party helping themselves to public money.
The Trudeau-Snc-Lavalin scandal is so much more…

Manitoba Hydro is on its deathbed. There, we said it.

Manitoba Hydro is on its deathbed.
Oh, you won't find anyone official to say it. Yet.
Like relatives trying to appear cheery and optimistic around a loved one that's been diagnosed with terminal cancer, the people in power are in the first stage of grief -- denial.
The prognosis for Hydro was delivered three weeks ago at hearings before the Public Utilities Board where the utility was seeking punishingly higher rates for customers in Manitoba.
It took us this long to read through the hundred-plus pages of transcript, to decipher the coded language of the witnesses, to interpret what they were getting at, and, finally, to understand the terrible conclusion.  We couldn't believe it, just as, we're sure, you can't--- so we did it all again, to get a second opinion, so to speak. 
Hydro conceded to the PUB that it undertook a massive expansion program--- involving three (it was once four) new dams and two new major powerlines (one in the United States)---which it could not a…

Nahanni Fontaine, the NDP's Christian-bashing, cop-smearing, other star candidate

As the vultures of the press circle over the wounded Liberal Party of Manitoba, one NDP star candidate must be laughing up her sleeve at how her extremist past has escaped the scrutiny of reporters and pundits.
Parachuted into a safe NDP seat in Winnipeg's North End, she nonetheless feared a bruising campaign against a well-heeled Liberal opponent.  Ha ha.  Instead, the sleepy newspeeps have turned a blind eye to her years of vitriolic attacks on Christianity, white people, and police.
* She's spent years bashing Christianity as the root cause of all the problems of native people in Canada.
* She's called for a boycott of white businesses.
* And with her  Marxist research partner, she's smeared city police as intransigent racists.
Step up Nahanni Fontaine,
running for election in St. John's riding as successor to the retiring Gord Macintosh.
While her male counterpart in the NDP's galaxy of stars, Wab Kinew, has responded to the controversy over his woman-and-gay bas…

Crips and Bloodz true cultural anchors of Winnipeg's aboriginal gangs

(Bebo tribute page to Aaron Nabess on the right, his handgun-toting friend on the left) At least six murder victims in Winnipeg in the past year are linked to a network of thuglife, gangster rap-styled, mainly aboriginal street gangs calling themselves Crips and Bloods after the major black gangs of L.A.
The Black Rod has been monitoring these gangs for several months ever since discovering memorial tributes to victim Josh Prince on numerous pages on Bebo.com, a social networking website like Myspace and Facebook.

Josh Prince, a student of Kildonan East Collegiate, was stabbed to death the night of May 26 allegedly while breaking up a fight. His family said at the time he had once been associated with an unidentified gang, but had since broken away.

But the devotion to Prince on sites like Watt Street Bloodz and Kingk Notorious Bloodz (King-K-BLOODZ4Life) shows that at the time of his death he was still accepted as one of their own.

Our searches of Bebo have turned up another five gang-li…

Sex and Drugs in the Peg. Is that what PM Justin Trudeau is covering up?

The Parliamentary Press Gallery spent the weekend yukking it up with Justin Trudeau at the annual gallery dinner, demonstrating that relations between the Prime Minister and the press were back to normal, the master and his voice in sync again. Things had been a little strained a few weeks ago when Trudeau, determined to show that he was a tough guy and not to be trifled with in the House of Commons, delivered a hard elbow to a female MP's breast while manhandling an Opposition MP who wasn't moving fast enough to suit the PM.
The reporters and pundits had to do quite the soft shoe to excuse Trudeau's boorishness when video of the incident contradicted his initial explanation for how his elbow smashed into her chest.  Luckily, the controversy subsided quickly and the press gallery could go back to work--- adoring the Sun King.
And then, last week, damn it, up popped another matter that threatened to blemish the reign of Trudeau II. Its name---Hunter Tootoo.
Hunter Tootoo turned…

It's time to call the family to pay their last respects. Manitoba Hydro is done.

A perfect storm is hitting Manitoba Hydro. Insolvency is inevitable. 

Eight months ago we reported that Hydro was on its deathbed, based on the testimony of the utility's own witnesses at a hearing of the Manitoba Public Utilities Board.

http://blackrod.blogspot.ca/2017/08/manitoba-hydro-is-on-its-deathbed-there.html
Since then the patient's condition has deteriorated rapidly. It's time to call the family to pay their last respects. 

Last week the Bank of Canada announced that the years of low interest rates are officially over. The Bank raised the bank rate by one quarter of one percent. It was the third rate hike within a year.  It's just the start.

The Bank of Canada expects at least one and possibly two more rate hikes in 2018.  That will bring the bank rate to about half of where the Bank wants it to be.  You read that right---half.  The Bank of Canada wants the bank rate to steady out at 2.5 percent, the lower end of a range the Bank feels is right for a healthy econo…