U of O Watch mission, in the words of Foucault...

"One knows … that the university and in a general way, all teaching systems, which appear simply to disseminate knowledge, are made to maintain a certain social class in power; and to exclude the instruments of power of another social class. … It seems to me that the real political task in a society such as ours is to criticise the workings of institutions, which appear to be both neutral and independent; to criticise and attack them in such a manner that the political violence which has always exercised itself obscurely through them will be unmasked, so that one can fight against them." -- Foucault, debating Chomsky, 1971.

U of O Watch mission, in the words of Socrates...

"An education obtained with money is worse than no education at all." -- Socrates

video of president allan rock at work

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Doctor Donald Kilby disciplined by CPSO following allegations of sexual exploitation of sick Black foreign student at U of O

Dr. Donald Kilby accepting the Nelson Mandela Humanitarian Award in 2014.

Recent criminal charges of a medical doctor covertly filming a young female patient at University of Ottawa Health Services causes one to examine that institution.

U of O Watch has discovered that the Director of Health Services, Dr. Donald Kilby, has been disciplined by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) for alleged financial coercion of a Black foreign student and patient for sexual service.

In its October 19, 2017 discipline report, the CPSO puts it this way:

[...] A patient (whose country of origin is outside Canada) complained to the College that after initiating financial support for the patient’s studies in Canada, Dr. Kilby said he would not continue to support the patient unless they were sexually intimate. The patient was also concerned that Dr. Kilby treated him for a certain condition and offered to give him a related vaccine, but then said the vaccine would cost $1500; the patient also claimed that Dr. Kilby did not tell him of risks associated with the patient’s condition.

Dr. Kilby denied the patient’s claims. He said he absolutely never made any suggestion to the patient that his financial support was conditional upon entering into a sexual relationship. He acknowledged treating the patient’s condition, but said he never gave him incorrect information and that he offered the patient employment at a clinic to help pay expenses, which could include a vaccine.

[...] As to the concern that Dr. Kilby threatened to withhold funds from the patient unless they engaged in a sexual relationship, the Committee concluded that a referral to the Discipline Committee was not warranted in all the circumstances of the case, as there was no reasonable prospect of successfully prosecuting the concern.
However, the Committee stated that it did have concerns about Dr. Kilby’s overall understanding of boundaries with patients, noting:

• The investigative record describes how Dr. Kilby has funded many students to come to Canada for university education, and how (among other forms of support) he has arranged (and often paid for) things such as part-time work and housing for them.
• By Dr. Kilby’s own admission, he provided episodic treatment to the patient (whether he made statements attributed to him about a vaccine was unknown to the Committee),and he admits to treating some of the other students for whom he provided financial support.
• Dr. Kilby indicated that, on reviewing the College policy, Physician Treatment of Self, Family Members or Others Close to Them, he recognized it could be perceived that the students fell under the definition of “others close to him.”
• Dr. Kilby indicated he has taken steps to ensure he will not treat the patient and he has drafted a letter to the other students under his care advising he was making arrangements to transfer their care.

The Committee noted that while it was important that Dr. Kilby has recognized the problem in treating the students whom he sponsored and often continued to support financially, the Committee was concerned by his actions to begin with, which reflected poor judgement on his part. The Committee said it needed reassurance that Dr. Kilby will not treat these students going forward, and that he fully understands his obligations in not treating those close to him and maintaining appropriate boundaries with patients at all times. The Committee decided the two-fold disposition set out above was appropriate in all the circumstances of this case.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Former U of O Chancellor Michaelle Jean luxuriously "represents" francophone Africa

Paul Arcand (98.5 FM, Montreal) recently interviewed former Governor General of Canada and former Chancellor of the University of Ottawa (under the Allan Rock presidency) Michaelle Jean about her expenses and her role as Secrétaire générale de l'Organisation internationale de la Francophonie (OIF):


Her justifications are exactly what they sound like (in French).

The interview was in response to disclosures in the Monreal popular press (LINK), and was followed by more (LINK).

Radio Canada this morning commented that her travel and living expenses are excessive, that her professional capacities are not up to the task, compared to her OIF predecessor, and that the Arcand interview illustrates these points.

Her husband Jean-Daniel Lafond recently made a National Film Board feature-length documentary film about her: HERE. Lafond defended his project to the media HERE.

A 2010 CBC profile of Jean is HERE.

Other U of O Watch blogposts that mention Michaelle Jean are HERE. Her Rock appointment at U of O was done in secrecy and had some controversy.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Professor Jan Grabowski expresses concern about historical precision

uOttawa called itself "Canada's university" under Allan Rock, and "Canada's university" showed itself to be very concerned about Israel's image, via many notable events. 

"Jan Grabowski is Professor of History at the University of Ottawa and Senior Invitational Scholar at the Advanced Holocaust Studies Center at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. He received the 2014 Yad Vashem International Book Prize for Holocaust Research for his book Judenjagd."

Here (September 11, 2016 -- Haaretz), professor Grabowski suggests that a country would use the "powerful machinery of state" to shape history to its advantage and to make laws to facilitate such. He's referring to Poland of course:

The students need to organize an academic debate between professor Jan Grabowski and doctor Norman Finkelstein, author of the authoritatively documented book The Holocaust Industry. The topic of state interference on historical precision is too important to leave to opinion media articles.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Professor Yoni Freedhoff writes about Palestinian terrorism, on his nutrition and healthy diet blog


University of Ottawa's professor Yoni Freedhoff (Faculty of Medicine) has a popular blog about nutrition and body weight (link on image). Every Saturday he draws his readers' attention to a few articles of broad societal interest.

Last Saturday (July 2) he recommended this article about "Palestinian terrorists in Israel".

I look forward to his upcoming recommendation about US-funded "Israeli terrorism perpetrated by Israel". I wonder if he will make that reading suggestion, since he usual recommends a balanced diet?

Friday, June 17, 2016

Allan Rock 'hopes' to become a law professor

Allan Rock's 8-year presidency at the University of Ottawa (Canada) ends this month (June 2016).

There has been some speculation about whether or not the newly elected Trudeau government would give the former federal minister and former Liberal candidate for Prime Minister a status job such as ambassador to a G8 country or Senate seat or high-level judgeship.

It appears that none of that is to pass (see below). Allan Rock is too much of a continued liability for the Liberal Party. Voters have not forgotten his three major political fiascos: the Irving ethics saga, tainted blood victim abandonment, and the gun registry costs manipulation.

Following his demotion from the Canadian ambassadorship at the UN, Rock continued to have a "shit magnet in his pocket" at the University of Ottawa where he decided that it would be a good idea for his family to start a legal marijuana enterprise in anticipation of a Trudeau legalization.

Furthermore, his actions at the U of O have led to unresolved legal cases, such as his unilateral dissolution of the entire student hockey team as part of his image management of sexual assault charges, which gave rise to a class action lawsuit against him and the school.

It is therefore not surprising that Trudeau is staying away from Rock, and is in no rush to legalize marijuana.

Yesterday, we learned in the school's alumnus magazine that:

"Rock is so deeply embedded in the University that he will not be gone for long. After a sabbatical, during which he will spend a semester at a U.S. law school, he hopes to teach in the Faculty of Law."

Therefore, in the tradition of Liberal nepotism, Rock "hopes" to be hired in the Faculty of Law where his "boss" would be dean Nathalie Des Rosiers, the dean he recently placed in that very position, after a period of allowing her to be in charge of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.

One problem is that Rock does not have any graduate degree and is therefore not eligible for a tenure-track professorship position, if the rules of peer-committee selection are followed, which apply the academic standards on hiring.

Is Rock's planned "semester at a U.S. law School" intended to provided him with a "graduate degree", or experience that a peer-committee could interpret as equivalent to a graduate degree? If so, the value of a graduate law degree will have been degraded significantly.

Furthermore, how can Rock's "semester" be part of a "sabbatical" if he has not already been de facto hired as a professor, prior to any academic committee review?

I would recommend that a media organization make a freedom of information request to learn about the new agreement that the U of O (which Rock still heads) has made with Mr. Rock about his future.

Academic standards in the Faculty of Law are at stake, as is the very principle of university collegial governance.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Academic supression in the U of O Faculty of Law: Zabo v. University of Ottawa

Zeph Zabo (left), Denis Rancourt (right), with M. Zabo's new book about his ordeal

M. Zabo was subjected to an egregious case of suppression of his academic freedom. Two external thesis evaluators accepted his PhD thesis for defence but two internal U of O law professors wanted him to write a different thesis, one about economic rather than legal analysis. Then "our" Canadian courts refused to recognize that he had a contract with the university that had formally accepted his originally planned thesis topic. Despicable case of academic abuse and legal discrimination.

I support M. Zabo's vehement quest for reparation and justice. Enough is enough. The U of O must be accountable.

Related post: Book.

Court decisions are here.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

U of O's Stéphane Émard-Chabot thinks the secrecy laws are just fine

U of O's law professor Stéphane Émard-Chabot thinks the secrecy laws are just fine.

Émard-Chabot is a former chef of staff of president Allan Rock and, as such, was subjected to an access request in the past (link) (link). The important stuff was never disclosed.

Recent article:
Editorial: The shroud of secrecy at the Ottawa Police Services Board (LINK):

That makes the exemption sound broad, but Stéphane Émard-Chabot, a municipal law expert at the University of Ottawa and former city councillor, says it’s actually quite a high bar.

“The fact that you’re dealing with contentious issues, that’s certainly not a reason in itself to go in private,” he says. “You have to show the ‘outweigh’ factor: the fact that keeping it private is paramount or of such importance that it outweighs the principle of keeping things open.”

Monday, May 2, 2016

U of O breaks gender-washroom apartheid

Finally, something we can all get behind.

U of O Watch endorses this new institutional opening allowing more student freedom. Just don't be calling in the police every time there is a hiccup.

New 'all-gender' washrooms set to open at University of Ottawa: 'We are leaving it up to individuals to use the facility they feel most comfortable with'
-- CBC News, 1 May 2016

U of O's socially responsible lawyer, Amir Attaran: Patients killed by goverment negligence

Durham Region, 29 April 2016:
Cancer Care Ontario ‘covering up’ casualties by hiding stem cell data, critics charge

U of O's socially responsible lawyer, Amir Attaran, uncovers another distasteful institutional misbehaviour. This time, refusing to disclose how many patients are killed by bad decisions and failing to take corrective action.

" "They're covering up," said Amir Attaran, a professor in the faculties of law and medicine at University of Ottawa. "It is a cynical abuse of privacy law, to shield a callous and incompetent agency from disclosing how many Ontarians its inattention and bad management have killed. Simple as that." "

Latest U of O image-marketing stunt: Carbon divestment, useless feel good

Globe & Mail, 26 April 2016:
University of Ottawa to cut the carbon footprint of its investments 

Whereas, authoritative studies show that carbon divestment can at best do nothing [1].

But why should the Allan Rock's administration rely on studies when it can build an image and provide students with good conscience?

Don't members of the Board know how to use Google, or think for themselves to avoid such image-marketing stunts?


[1] Divestment Does Nothing to Reduce Reliance on Fossil Fuels: Noise? Yes. Affect the Supply-and-demand Economics? No. Wrong Kind of Green, 13 February 2016; and references therein.

Monday, April 25, 2016

And again

Allan Rock is being himself. Fire an entire hockey team in one case. Don't accommodate a single student for one course in another. Instead, force the student to go legal. That's in character.

University accused of discrimination for requiring dyslexic student to take course in French

Critics say human rights law trumps University of Ottawa's tradition of bilingualism

By Erica Johnson, CBC News Posted: Apr 25, 2016 5:00 AM ET Last Updated: Apr 25, 2016 7:54 AM ET

The Student Federation of the University of Ottawa says it has seen many cases where the university has 'failed to provide adequate accommodations.' (CBC)

(Editor's note: We are back. Sorry that we missed March.)
Also follow us on Facebook.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Rancourt v. St. Lewis: Supreme Court judgement harms freedom of expression and fair trial rights in Canada --OCLA


Release: Rancourt v. St. Lewis: Supreme Court judgement harms freedom of expression and fair trial rights in Canada

(OTTAWA, February 18, 2016) – The Ontario Civil Liberties Association (OCLA) opposes the Supreme Court of Canada’s judgement released today, which denies the appeal application of Dr. Denis Rancourt. (Links below.)

The judgement erodes freedom of speech and fair trial rights in Canada:

• The Court condoned permanent censorship (enforceable by jail) of future and unknown expression if the defendant cannot afford to pay possible damages.

• The Court allowed the defendant to be barred from any defence because he chose to rely solely on the plaintiff’s evidence.

• The Court refused to consider the defendant’s argument that court-ordered legal costs themselves are an unconstitutional infringement on the right of freedom of expression when the plaintiff’s legal costs were paid by the University of Ottawa.

• The Court violated its own constitutional duty by refusing to hear that the Ontario appellate court itself had violated Dr. Rancourt’s French language rights.

• The Court refused to hear that the Canadian common law of judicial bias is contrary to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and is therefore unconstitutional.

Dr. Rancourt will appeal the Supreme Court’s decision to the Human Rights Committee of the United Nations, as allowed by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which Canada ratified.

Supreme Court judgement of February 18, 2016: http://scc-csc.lexum.com/scc-csc/news/en/item/5165/index.do
Closing submission: http://ocla.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/2015-11-06-RvStL-SCCLTA-Reply.pdf
Originating application submission: http://ocla.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/2015-09-28-RvStL-SCCLTA-Application.pdf

About the Ontario Civil Liberties Association
The Ontario Civil Liberties Association (OCLA) defends civil liberties at a time when fundamental freedoms are being eroded in all spheres of social life. OCLA opposes institutional policies and decisions that deprive individuals of their personal liberty or exclude individuals from participation in the democratic functions of society.

Joseph Hickey
Executive Director
Ontario Civil Liberties Association (OCLA) http://ocla.ca

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Justice corrompue, Zabo vs. Université d'Ottawa --ebook

"Basé sur une histoire vraie, macabre et très dévastatrice, ce livre constitue le fruit du combat herculéen de l’auteur pour le rétablissement de la vérité et de la justice dans cette affaire judiciaire connue et répertoriée sous le nom Zabo vs. Université d’Ottawa. Il vise aussi à préserver la justice, la liberté, l’égalité, l’excellence et les valeurs morales au sein des institutions universitaire et judiciaires concernées.

Il fait le récit d’une histoire de barbarie, de corruption, d'une culture de violation des règlements, de violation abusive du contrat université-étudiant, de parodie et déni de justice en milieu universitaire.

Dans ce récit émouvant et plein de rebondissements, qui s’appuie notamment sur les affidavits sous serment des deux directeurs du programme de doctorat en droit de l’Université d’Ottawa témoignant en faveur de l’étudiant concerné, l'auteur dénonce vigoureusement la crucifixion dont il a été victime et le calvaire vécu."

Friday, January 22, 2016

U of O appeals from interim motion judgement to a panel of the Divisional Court

The U of O is doing everything it can to strike the union's affidavit of evidence for the judicial review of the dismissal of Rancourt

Rancourt's union (Association of Professors of the University of Ottawa, APUO) is pursuing a judicial review (appeal) of an arbitrator's January 27, 2014 decision to uphold the university's December 10, 2008 dismissal of tenured full-professor Denis Rancourt. (link)

The arbitrator made negative findings in a total absence of evidence, and ignored relevant evidence that contradicted his findings. He also used a "report" obtained by covert surveillance, which was not in evidence. These were violations of natural justice, and are grounds in the judicial review.

In order to prove the arbitrator's errors, the union must bring an affidavit in the judicial review to say what actually happened during the arbitration hearings, because no court transcript of the 28-day hearing is available.

(The hearings were held between May 2, 2011 to June 26, 2013. The university appeared to do everything it could to delay and complexify the process, including a broad and sustained campaign of character assassination of Denis Rancourt.)

Thus, the union's affidavit about what actually occurred in the arbitration is necessary for the judicial review. Yet, the university is spending tremendous resources in now-repeated attempts to disallow the union's affidavit.

The university can of course challenge the union's affidavit and enter its own affidavit in the judicial review itself. But, instead, it seeks to bar the union from even bringing an affidavit.

The first attempt by the university to bar the union's affidavit was a motion to a judge of the appellate court (Divisional Court for Ontario) to strike out the union's entire affidavit. This attempt failed entirely. The appellate judge was unambiguous and ordered the university to pay the union's costs for the motion. (See appellate judge's ruling HERE, and U of O Watch article HERE.)

That is not good enough for the university. President Allan Rock instructed the university hired lawyers to appeal the appellate judge's judgement to a full panel of three appellate court judges. This will be a second costly attempt to strike out the union's needed affidavit so that the evidence cannot be used in the judicial review. Without the affidavit, or any evidence about what actually was said in the hearings, the judicial review is destined to fail.

The union is resisting this second attempt and will request that punitive costs be ordered against the university. The hearing before a panel of the Divisional Court is scheduled for April 2016.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Allan Rock administration lets accused rapist escape out of country

It turns out the U of O admin had a detailed complaint in-hand and let the accused rapist escape.

Maybe Allan Rock was too busy having a committee discuss rape culture, and firing an entire hockey team, to actually protect students...?

Another U of O student reported man now charged with sexual assault

That student – who spoke on the condition that her name not be published – shared with Metro a detailed complaint she emailed to the university about the same man identified by Morin.

The woman sent the complaint on Nov. 30 using her university email account to a member of the school’s Protection Services unit, which investigates crimes that happen on campus.

Courses ended Dec. 9. Fall-term examination period ended Dec. 22. Meanwhile, the accused rapist has escaped to Lebanon, and there is no word that the university asked the police to investigate the broader incidents.

More proof that the Allan Rock rape culture episode was indeed primarily an image management exercise, as reported by concerned students at the time.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Critical examination of Romeo Dallaire's role in Rwanda and connection to Allan Rock

Former Liberal Party of Canada heavyweight U of O president Allan Rock's previous stint was to push military interventionism, as Canada's ambassador to the UN. He then used the university to promote the "responsibility to protect" (R2P) doctrine directly to students and to the Canadian public.

Recently author/researcher Yves Engler critically exposed how R2P has been propped up by biased media coverage of former Liberal senator Romeo Dallaire's role in Rwanda:

"While two decades old, the distortion of the Rwandan tragedy continues to have political impacts today. It has given ideological cover to dictator Paul Kagame’s repeated invasions of the Congo and domestic repression. In addition, this foreign policy myth has been used to justify foreign military intervention as is the case with the current political crisis in Burundi. The myth of Dallaire in Rwanda is also cited to rationalize the Responsibility to Protect doctrine, when, in factm the true story illustrates the inevitable duplicitousness of foreign interventions."

Yves Engler, Romeo Dallaire in Rwanda: The Myth Continues, Dissident Voice, 28 December 2015.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Profs sue uOttawa over executives' pay hike --Ottawa Citizen

Profs sue uOttawa over executives' pay hike

“In its application APUO alleges that these raises are illegal under the Broader Public Sector Accountability Act, which the Ontario government passed in 2010,” the association said in a news release. “This law stipulates that compensation paid to senior administrators such as Dr. Nemer and Dr. Bradwejn ‘cannot be increased’.”

The APUO represents 1,250 full-time faculty and librarians at the University of Ottawa. It’s the first time the association has taken the university to court, Dekker said. The university was served with the papers Thursday and the application is expected to be filed in court on Monday, Dekker said.

“The university insists that faculty have to prepare for cuts to programs, teaching assistants, library services and so on — students are also paying among the highest tuition fees in the country,” she said. “So we are reasonably asking why the administrators are awarding themselves massive raises while the province has made it clear that administrators are not to receive pay increases.”

Monday, December 7, 2015

Allan Rock will fight corruption at the University of Ottawa

U of O launches a "Canadian Centre of Excellence for Anti-Corruption"::: "Allan Rock, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ottawa, will give the opening remarks." (LINK)

In contrast, remember this? ::: "[Rock's] behaviour since the Irving affair became public has revealed him to be ethically challenged. […] it took Rock days to apologize. And he only grudgingly did so after Labour Minister Claudette Bradshaw rose in the Commons and offered an unqualified apology for accepting a ride on the Irving corporate jet three years ago. She also announced she was reimbursing the family for the flight." – Ottawa Citizen, November 8, 2003, page 1.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

New president named to fill Allan Rock's shoes: Speech-regulation-law administrator Jacques Frémont

The next president will be: Jacques Frémont. From Allan Rock's overt Zionism to a new social engineering for speech regulation. Progress never ends.

The U of O put out its announcement today: HERE.

The media are invited to attend a ceremony on Friday: LINK.

Mr. Jacques Frémont's official U of O bio is HERE.

At first sight, the new direction could signal a coming SPEECH CODE (code of conduct) for campus...? Mr. Frémont is a champion of expressly victimless "hate speech" provisions in provincial human rights codes:

Interviewer: "Imagine the situation where... a young man who is intimidated by his classmates because he's Muslim, for example, in what way will the addition you are making to the Quebec Charter of Rights help him, will protect him?"

JF: "Technically, if it's one young man who gets intimidated because he's Muslim, that's already covered by the Charter -- you are quite right. It's when we have general statements -- general, hateful statements, inciting hatred, etc. -- where there is no particular, individual victim -- it's the group in general that is the victim -- that's what we're targeting with this addition."

National Post View: Quebec hate speech bill would re-establish bureaucratic despotism:::

The bill takes its inspiration from recommendations made public by the QHRC in November 2014. Jacques Frémont, the commission’s president, explained that he planned to use the requested powers to sue those critical of certain ideas, “people who would write against … the Islamic religion … on a website or on a Facebook page.”

Frémont is an unabashed legal activist, who sees the QHRC’s mandate as “provoking a social change” and “making the law.” ...

The details of Bill 59 are chilling. Article 6 would “give the QHRC the power to initiate legal proceedings before the Quebec Human Rights Tribunal without having to wait for complaints from the public.” Article 3 allows members of an identifiable group as well as people outside the group to make complaints triggering suits for hate speech before the Quebec Human Rights Tribunal.

Canada: The Spanish Inquisition Makes a Comeback:::

  • Some readers will remember the disputes during the last decade when the journalists were hauled before the farcical "Human Rights Commissions" of Canada and asked to explain why they had ever said anything that the state commissars did not agree with. Best of all is that the members of the Commission do not have to wait for anybody to complain to them before they act.
  • The Commission is allowed to head out all by itself and search for things that are offensive. One must wonder whether it may just – wholly unforeseeably – be a government department which continuously finds work to justify its existence?
  • The Tribunal is planning to keep a publicly available list of people found guilty of "hate speech" — like a sex-offender database. Presumably this means that members of the public can check that they are not living in the proximity of anybody who is likely to express him-or-herself with words.
  • I am sure that Monsieur Fremont will agree that the safest thing to do is either not to report an attack on the Canadian Parliament or to ensure that all papers or individuals who mention such an attack are immediately fined $10,000 and put on the Hate-Speech-offenders list for doing so.
  • The Human Rights Tribunal will be able to decide on each occasion how much money it wants. Might it not in fact be more convenient for the Tribunals if they simply put all writers on a system of direct-debit and levy the fine on absolutely everyone after any terrorist attack?
  • We had hoped that the country had learned that for most of the civilized world, blasphemy laws are meant to be a thing of the past. But after the latest events in Quebec, we will no longer be fooled. The whole world will be able to see that in Canada blasphemy laws are a thing of the future.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

U of O culture of intolerance apparent in nonsensical attack against yoga class


Free Ottawa yoga class scrapped over 'cultural issues' (LINK)

By Aedan Helmer, Ottawa Sun
First posted: | Updated:

Friday, November 20, 2015

L'Ontario franchit un pas de plus envers la création d'une nouvelle université de langue française

Ottawa, le 20 novembre 2015 – L’Assemblée de la francophonie de l’Ontario (L’Assemblée), le Regroupement étudiant franco-ontarien (RÉFO) et la Fédération de la jeunesse franco-ontarienne (FESFO) se réjouissent du consensus politique qui semble se former parmi les député.e.s à Queen’s Park à l’égard du projet de création d’une nouvelle université franco-ontarienne. Hier, le Projet de loi 104 : Loi constituant l’Université de l’Ontario français a été approuvé unanimement par l’Assemblée législative de l’Ontario en deuxième lecture et procède maintenant à l’étape de l’étude au sein du Comité permanent de la politique sociale. Les trois organismes vont suivre avec attention les discussions en comité et souhaitent que les député.e.s provinciaux permettent au projet de loi de passer rapidement en 3e lecture pour ensuite être adopté.

« Nous sommes heureux de constater l’appui des trois partis au projet d’une nouvelle université franco-ontarienne, une priorité du nouveau Plan stratégique communautaire de l’Ontario français. Ce vote positif à la législature est une autre étape franchie envers l’aboutissement de ce grand projet. L’Assemblée souhaite que les législateurs et législatrices procèdent de manière expéditive pour en arriver à l’adoption du projet de loi en 3e lecture, l’étape définitive pour que ce projet voit le jour. La communauté attend depuis deux générations cette institution qui sera la leur, comme le sont les collèges La Cité et Boréal, l’Université de Hearst, et les conseils scolaires de langue française », a déclaré Denis Vaillancourt, président de L’Assemblée.
« Nous remercions les trois partis de s’être positionnés en faveur de la mise sur pied d'une nouvelle université gérée par et pour les francophones. Nous avons raison de célébrer ce nouveau jalon, mais il est important que la communauté demeure vigilante et continue à engager leurs député.e.s, peu importe leur parti, dans cette importante conversation », a partagé Geneviève Borris, coprésidente du RÉFO. Elle ajoute que « malgré les succès de la journée d’hier, nous attendons que le gouvernement aille encore plus loin qu'un appui de principe et partage, d'ici le début de l'hiver, ses échéanciers pour la nomination d'un conseil des gouverneurs de transition, qui pourra mettre sur pied cette université d'ici 2018. »

Le président de la FESFO, Jérémie J. Spadafora, souligne pour sa part l’urgence d’agir pour que les élèves du secondaire franco-ontarien aient de réelles options pour la poursuite de leurs études postsecondaires en français. « Un trop grand nombre d’élèves francophones n’ont toujours pas un accès adéquat à des programmes universitaires dans leur langue et dans leur région. Je célèbre aujourd’hui un pas important pour la jeunesse franco-ontarienne. Je représente des jeunes de la 9e à la 12e année et il est impératif que la majorité d’entre eux et elles aient l’option d’étudier dans la nouvelle université franco-ontarienne lorsque viendra leur graduation », a affirmé le président de la FESFO.

L’engouement qui entoure le projet de création d’une nouvelle université franco-ontarienne continue à grandir et les appuis de citoyen.ne.s, d’organismes, d’institutions et de leaders se multiplient de jour en jour. Les trois organismes partenaires souhaitent remercier la communauté franco-ontarienne pour sa mobilisation en faveur du mouvement et invitent la population à continuer à manifester publiquement son appui pour ce projet essentiel pour l’avenir de l’Ontario français.
- 30 -

Monday, November 9, 2015

Corporate lawyer and Air Canada boss Calin Rovinescu named chancellor of U of O

The new chancellor Calin Rovinescu is going to fit right in... Compare: "Air Canada nearly doubles CEO Rovinescu’s pension" (Globe & Mail, April 21, 2015) and "Faculty association asks province to investigate raises given senior uOttawa administrators" (Ottawa Citizen, October 6, 2015)(and-this)(and-this).

A corporate lawyer who has made it a practice for Air Canada to disregard passenger rights and to use the courts in insisting on disregarding passenger rights will be the figurehead of the University of Ottawa: University-press-release.

Here is just one example of how Rovinescu instructs his Air Canada legal team to operate against unsuspecting travelers (Link-to-judge's-findings):

90 ... Air Canada failed to comply with an obligation that its customer service agent initially acknowledged existed, and instead acted as if some other form of compensation was appropriate for what had happened. It ignored, in other words, its own Tariff.

91 To add insult to injury it took the position that Mr Lachance was “mistaken” as to what flight he was on when he left Toronto for Vancouver. I think too I can take judicial notice of the fact that Air Canada presents itself to the public as a professional carrier which can be relied upon to provide positive travel experiences to its customers; to treat them with respect; and to honour their booked and confirmed itineraries to the extent possible. Air Canada recognized when it entered into its contract of carriage with Mr Lachance that a long and unexpected delay spent in an airport is neither a pleasant nor a happy experience, and that such a delay would cause some distress to him. (Indeed, this understanding is reflected in the fact that the compensatory damages payable under Rule 245AC increase with the length of the delay.) This then is an appropriate case for damages ...

This, in turn, is only apparent in the relatively few cases where the traveler goes all the way to a trial, and exposes the Air Canada lawyer tactics.

One more step in Allan Rock's corporatization of the institution. Shameful regression in our opinion.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Rancourt v St Lewis: Rancourt files REPLY in his application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court

Rancourt's REPLY

The defamation case funded by the University of Ottawa against former professor Denis Rancourt went to trial in 2014. The trial result was appealed by Rancourt to the Court of Appeal for Ontario. The appeal was dismissed. Rancourt is now seeking leave to appeal from the Supreme Court of Canada.

  • The September 28, 2015, APPLICATION for leave to appeal is here: 

  • Rancourt filed a Notice of Constitutional Question to the Supreme Court on October 7, 2015.
Blogpost: http://uofowatch.blogspot.ca/2015/10/rancourt-v-st-lewis-rancourt-serves.html
Notice: https://archive.org/details/post--2015-10-07--NCQ--SCC36653--2--w-sig--w-stamp--OCR

  • The October 29, 2015, RESPONSE of St. Lewis to the application is here:

  • The November 6, 2015, REPLY, as a 2-page correspondence, of Rancourt is here:

That completes the filings for the application for leave to appeal.

All the steps of the entire proceedings since 2011 are reported on this blog: TAG-all-blogposts.

Monday, November 2, 2015

A short and incomplete video history of student activism at U of O...


Did you know about this YouTube channel "KrillKop"?

It has an eclectic collection of videos of past student activism against institutional logic at U of O.

Check it out.

Like the time Allan Rock lost his nerve with student Marc Kelly and yelled at him like a crazed university president...: HERE. (Marc had a recorder in his pocket.)

Or the time the Faculty of Science decided it needed hyper security against student walk-in inquiries...: HERE.

And many more.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

"Maureen Robinson ... went so far as to liken her monitoring of Professor Rancourt as 'posing as a young girl to catch a pedophile'" --Divisional Court Judge

Union wins interim motion in appeal of the Rancourt dismissal

A short background summary of this recent leg of the protracted battle over the University of Ottawa's dismissal of tenured physics professor Denis Rancourt was given in this October 9 post (LINK).

Following the October 8 hearing of the university's interim motion to strike the union's affidavit in support of the union's application for judicial review... (the university wanted to deprive the union of evidence about what actually happened during the lengthy labour arbitration that upheld the dismissal)... Divisional Court (appellate court) Justice Robert Scott released his decision on October 26, 2015.

Justice Scott's decision is HERE.

Rancourt's union won the motion completely and unequivocally. The union's affidavit of evidence survives in whole, and is appended to the judge's decision, as "Appendix A" (HERE). This is the first significant positive judgement since the 2009 dismissal.

The judge's ruling gives an indication of how the university's extensive use of a hired student spy -- using unethical methods such as assuming false cyber identities and advancing false pretexts for collecting information from third parties, all condoned by the university and its legal counsel -- will be viewed by the higher courts, whereas the Arbitrator in the labour arbitration refused to accept its relevance (LINK).

Justice Scott put it this way (LINK):


[15] The circumstances of Maureen Robinson's involvement in this entire matter is troubling at best. Throughout the relevant portion of the Award by Arbitrator Foisy, Ms. Robinson's written notes were referred to "the report on Professor Rancourt's address prepared by a University of Ottawa student"

[16] Pursuant to the Udell Affidavit, and based on evidence from the hearing, the student being Maureen Robinson was the editor of the student newspaper who had been hired by the University in what the University described as in a clerical capacity to assist Professor Rancourt in his office, without his input on her hiring.

[17] Either in consultation with her employer, the University, or on her own, she monitored the activities of Professor Rancourt both on and off campus and reported her finding back to the University. In an email to Dean Lalonde, she admitted to having a "personal grudge" against Professor Rancourt and went so far as to liken her monitoring of Professor Rancourt as "posing as a young girl to catch a pedophile". Ms. Robinson was not called as a witness at the hearing and, the parties agreed that her "report" would be considered as an "aide memoire" only.

[18] The University referred to the "report" thereafter as a transcript which such description was objected to by the APUO. Similarly, Arbitrator Foisy made certain findings which appear to be based solely on the report which was not evidence.

[19] Given the unique circumstances, paragraphs 3 - 13 are necessary and in keeping with Keeprite and Kingston Utilities, this affidavit evidence should be admitted on the judicial review to "show an absence of evidence on an essential point".


[20] It is difficult to separate the input of the evidence or lack of evidence of Ms. Robinson and the circumstances of her somewhat bizarre involvement in this matter, from the other areas of concern identified by the Applicant, APUO. [...]

And see the background about the motion hearing itself: HERE.

Maureen Robinson did her BSc in chemistry at the University of Ottawa, graduating in 2010. She then moved to Australia to do her MSc, and is now employed at Golder Associates, in West Perth, Australia. The university did not make her available to be cross-examined during the labour arbitration that ended in 2013.

Maureen Robinson's fake Facebook identity was "Nathalie Page". In her regular email reports to the dean of science and to the then university legal counsel Michelle Flaherty, Robinson would joke: "Hi, It's Nathalie...", when sending emails from a fake gmail account. This was the fake Facebook profile picture for "Nathalie":

Fake picture for the false cyber identity "Nathalie Page" created by Maureen Robinson

These exhibits (LINK) describe some of Robinson's detailed reports to the university.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Rock administration loses another access-to-information decision - Seven more Allan Rock emails ordered disclosed - IPC Order PO-3540-F

The University of Ottawa's poor record of systematically opposing access to information has been documented many times on this blog.

On October 15, 2015, the University of Ottawa lost another Information and Privacy Commissioner (IPC) decision (LINK to Student's-Eye View report). Seven (7) more Allan Rock emails were ordered disclosed: IPC Order PO-3540-F.

Here are excerpts from the decision:

[5] In this order, I do not uphold the university's decision to withhold the records pursuant to section 17(1) of the Act, and I order it to release the records to the appellant.

[8] The university argues that the records contain commercial information supplied to it by third parties and are exempt pursuant to the mandatory third party information exemption at section 17(1) ...

[12] The university goes on to submit that disclosure would result in such information not being provided to the university again. It submits that, at the commencement of or during the relationship between the university and a third party, high level exchanges of communications will often take place between the third party and senior executives of the university, Including the President. The university submits that it is important to these discussions that third parties be able to share information freely, and that if they learn that information which they provide may be disclosed, they may not be willing to engage in similar high-level strategic discussions. As a result, the university will be prejudiced in its ability to negotiate new projects and undertakings with third parties.

[14] The appellant submits that these records do not relate to "informational assets". He points out that the subject of record 164 is "visit to country", and the subject of record 209 is "country". ...

[25] I conclude that the university has not discharged its onus and that there is no reasonable expectation of the harm identified by the university occurring if the records are disclosed. Therefore, section 17(1) does not apply to them. ...

I order the university to disclose records 143, 164, 209, 219, 270, 271 and 272 to the appellant ... This disclosure is to take place by November 20, 2015...

Friday, October 23, 2015

OCLA Director authors blistering report about U of O's deplorable access-to-information practices

The Executive Director of the Ontario Civil Liberties Association, Joseph Hickey, has authored and published a report about the documented deplorable practices of the University of Ottawa in responding to access-to-information requests:

"Access Denied in Ontario: A Critical Examination of the Roles of the University, the Commissioner, the Legislature, and the Courts (LINK)"

"First, I present the U of O’s behaviour in response to FOI requests using data obtained from statistics reports published annually by Ontario’s Information and Privacy Commissioner (IPC) and from publicly available adjudication decisions (“orders”) made by the IPC about the university. This is followed by a description of specific examples of tactics used by the university to deny access to information, and the impact this can have on researchers, activists, and others who seeks information from the university. The third section discusses why the U of O maintains bad FOI practices that contravene the purposes of the FIPPA. The final section considers what can be done to improve access at the U of O and in other public institutions across the province."

The report is well documented, with many records in appendix. (LINK) (PDF)

Allan Rock responds to criticism of his planned avoidance of sexual assault training

Here is Allan Rock's you-got-my-attention response to THIS OPEN LETTER (LINK) from the student federation.

From: Allan Rock <arock@uottawa.ca>
Date: Mon, Oct 19, 2015 at 8:50 AM
Subject: RE: Training regarding sexual violence on campus
To: Mireille Gervais <director.src@sfuo.ca>
Cc: Vice-recteur Etudes <vretudes@uottawa.ca>, Mona Nemer <mnemer@uottawa.ca>, Louis De Melo <ldemelo@uottawa.ca>, Marc Joyal <Marc.Joyal@uottawa.ca>, Diane Davidson <Diane.Davidson@uottawa.ca>, "Julien, Francois" <Julien@telfer.uottawa.ca>, Arts Dean <deanarts@uottawa.ca>, Nathalie Des Rosiers <Nathalie.Desrosiers@uottawa.ca>, Celine Levesque <Celine.Levesque@uottawa.ca>, DEDUC <deduc@uottawa.ca>, dean@genie.uottawa.ca, DEANGRAD <deangrad@uottawa.ca>, "Steve Perry (Dean, Science)" <deansci@uottawa.ca>, Marcel Merette <mmerette@uottawa.ca>, Helene Perrault <Helene.Perrault@uottawa.ca>, Jacques Bradwejn <Jacques.Bradwejn@uottawa.ca>, APUOPRES <apuopres@uottawa.ca>, "Coordonnateur.rice syndical.e Union Coordinator" <info@cupe2626.ca>, APTPUO info <info@aptpuo.ca>, PSUO President <president@psuo-ssuo.ca>, Vanessa Dorimain <vp.university@sfuo.ca>, Anne-Marie Roy <president@sfuo.ca>, Maxime Goulet-Delorme <redaction@larotonde.ca>, Nadia Drissi El-Bouzaidi <editor@thefulcrum.ca>, Ajà Besler <communications@gsaed.ca>, Caroline Andrew <candrew@uottawa.ca>, Lucie Allaire <Lucie.Allaire@uottawa.ca>, Michael Orsini <morsini@uottawa.ca>, Julien de Bellefeuille <jdebellefeuille@sfuo.ca>, Termeh Ataei <reception.src@sfuo.ca>, Jordan Alexander <advocate1@sfuo.ca>, Timothy Mott <tmott@sfuo.ca>, Cabinet du recteur - Office of the President <recteur@uottawa.ca>

Dear Mireille, 

Thank you for your message. I would also thank you and the team at the Student Rights Centre for taking the time to complete the training on sexual violence offered by CALACS and ORCC.

Your comments are certainly relevant and fair, and I would like to confirm that at the next AC/deans council meeting, on November 24, members of the University’s senior administration will receive the same two-hour training that has been offered to others on campus.  

In addition, once the new sexual violence protocol is approved, the Action Team and our Human Rights Office plan to hold an additional training session specifically on this topic for deans and members of the Administration Committee. Another training session will be held once the new policy on sexual violence is in place.

In terms of the evaluation process, the Action Team has hired an external reviewer to conduct a full evaluation of the CALACS and ORCC pilot project, which includes training sessions and counselling services on campus by the two organizations. Part of this review will involve evaluating the relevance and suitability of the training provided with a view to ensuring, in particular, that: 
·         Individuals who have completed the CALACS or ORCC training have a better understanding of the myths surrounding sexual assault and its various forms.
·         Individuals who have completed the CALACS or ORCC training have a better understanding of the notion of consent.
·         Training participants have developed the core competencies necessary to respond appropriately to a disclosure.
·         Training participants are familiar with the procedures and protocols in place at the University of Ottawa for cases of sexual assault and know where to refer members of the University community looking for support following an incident of sexual assault.
In order to complete her evaluation, the reviewer will first send a survey to all training participants. She will then conduct individual interviews and hold group discussions with members of the groups that attended the sessions in order to evaluate the skills and knowledge they acquired during the training.

I hope the information I have provided answers your questions. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you wish to discuss the matter further.



Description: Description: Site Web de l'Université d'Ottawa | University of Ottawa website
Allan Rock
Recteur et vice-chancelier | President and Vice-Chancellor
Cabinet du recteur | Office of the President
Université d'Ottawa | University of Ottawa
Pavillon Tabaret | Tabaret Hall
550 Cumberland (212)
Ottawa ON K1N 6N5
613-562-5809 | 1-888-uOttawa

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Director of the Student Rights Centre is holding Allan Rock to account for his "lip service" to sexual violence recommendations

We all remember the national media celebration of Rock's strategy apparently intended to avoid taking radical (to the root) steps to address sexual violence (LINK-CBC). And we recall student groups not being convinced of Rock's authenticity in this matter (LINK1)(LINK2)(LINK3). The student view of Rock is not surprising given his first-reaction hesitance and denial (LINK).

Well now the Director of the Student Rights Centre (of the Student Federation University of Ottawa) is holding Mr. Rock to account regarding what appears to have been an elaborate media and corporate-image management device?

This is the open letter that was sent to president Rock and to some twenty or so university executives and student media:

From: Mireille Gervais <director.src@sfuo.ca>
Date: Fri, Oct 9, 2015 at 12:26 PM
Subject: Training regarding sexual violence on campus
To: [many]

Mr. Rock,

On Tuesday, October 6, 2015, the staff at the Student Rights Centre of the Student Federation of the University of Ottawa (SRC-SFUO) attended the training organized by the U of O regarding sexual violence on campus. As you know, this training, which was delivered by the Ottawa Rape Crisis Centre, was offered in an effort to implement some of the recommendations made in the Report of the Task Force on Respect and Equality: Ending Sexual Violence at the University of Ottawa (the Report). Specifically, the Report called for better leadership commitment, including mandatory training to all members of the senior administration: 

“We recommend that the University demonstrate its commitment to preventing sexual violence and promoting a culture of respect and equality by providing mandatory training to all members of the senior administration, including the deans, vice-deans and chief administrative officers of all ten faculties, on the nature and causes of, and solutions to, the issue of sexual violence, before the beginning of the 2015-2016 academic year” (section 6.2) 

The training we attended was scheduled for two hours, which in fact was not a sufficient amount of time to go through all the material that had been foreseen.

I have been informed that you, however, along with the other members of the upper administration as well as the deans, intend to receive a shortened version of this training, to last one hour, in November. 

In my opinion, this does not illustrate better leadership commitment on the part of the university administration. This is particularly worrying considering that in many cases, it is the deans themselves who have the responsibility to investigate and/or discipline alleged perpetrators of sexual violence. 

The training stresses the importance of considering power differential when discussing sexual violence. Considering that the upper administration, including the deans, hold the most power within our hierarchical structure, in my view, your training should be twice as long rather than twice as short.  

In light of this, please confirm that the upper administration, including the deans, will receive, minimally, the same training that was foreseen for the rest of the university community.

Furthermore, I am concerned that the short session that is planned will be a one-time occurrence that will not provide the necessary technical training to the deans. Sexual violence on campus is a serious and complex issue that demands ongoing discussion and education. In the interest of transparency, please provide the training plan for the upper administration beyond what might otherwise be seen as paying lip service to the recommendations made in the Report.

Finally, please inform us of the evaluation methods that will be implemented to ensure that the key concepts of the training have been understood. Considering the importance of this issue for our campus, I believe it is essential to ensure that the training has met its intended goals.


Mireille Gervais
Directrice, Centre des droits étudiants
Director, Student Rights Centre
Fédération étudiante de l'Université d'Ottawa / Student Federation of the University of Ottawa
tel: 613-562-5800 X 2952
fax: 613-562-5767
UCU 101

Friday, October 9, 2015

Happenings in the U of O’s “motion to strike”, in the judicial review of the Rancourt dismissal

Update:  Rancourt's union won the motion and won costs. The October 26, 2015, judicial decision of the Divisional Court is HERE.

Denis Rancourt at the courthouse on October 8, 2015

By Denis G. Rancourt

On October 8, 2015, there was the first hearing before the appellate court in the matter of the 2009 dismissal of tenured physics professor Denis Rancourt, in Ottawa before Divisional Court Judge Robert Scott (who travelled from Belleville for the hearing).

The Divisional Court hearing was to decide a university’s motion to strike (remove, disallow) the union’s affidavit of evidence about what occurred in the labour arbitration hearings, for which transcripts do not exist. After the hearing, Justice Scott said he would study the motion record further and provide his decision as soon as he can.

Justice Scott made interesting comments during the October 8th hearing, and the university’s tactics in the motion are also of note.

Brief history of the case

Tenured professor Denis Rancourt was fired by the Allan Rock administration of the University of Ottawa in 2009 over his grading of students in one advanced physics course. This TVO video interview from 2009 is a vivid summary of the academic dimension of the conflict:

A lengthy labour arbitration followed, in which it was shown that the university had employed a student spy (Maureen Robinson, using the false cyber identity “Nathalie Page”) who made extensive surveillance of professor Rancourt and of students and gave weekly reports to both the dean of science and University Counsel Michelle Flaherty (LINK).

During the lengthy arbitration hearings, the university’s hired lawyer Lynn Harnden spent most of the time presenting professor Rancourt’s political and professional views in a negative light. He went so far as to repeatedly suggest that professor Rancourt’s writings incited students to violence, and even showed this video at the hearing, since he had found it in one of the professor’s Playlists on YouTube:

On the central question, the arbitrator disregarded the hard evidence of grading (examination copies, and grading sheets), disregarded the dean’s admission that he had no evidence that any student did not deserve his or her grade, and upheld the dismissal in 2014.

The professors’ union announced in 2014 that it would appeal the arbitrator’s decision (LINK):

“While the decision not only upheld the Employer’s unjust dismissal decision, the arbitrator also made some troubling statements concerning Academic Freedom which can have a profoundly negative impact on academics everywhere.”

Happenings in the motion hearing

Following the union’s filing of its application for judicial review, the university brought a motion to strike the union’s affidavit about what occurred during the labour arbitration hearings. After much delay, the motion was finally heard on October 8, 2015.

Despite the fact that there is a large amount of documentary evidence (many exhibits) that Ms. Robinson was hired for surveillance and gave regular reports about her activities (including details about her use of a false cyber identity, and her misrepresentations in requesting information from third parties) (LINK),

and despite the labour arbitrator himself finding (LINK, see paragraph 58) “[a] report on Professor Rancourt’s address prepared by a University of Ottawa student and editor to the students newspaper (attending the talk with the purpose of monitoring the communication by Professor Rancourt), was entered into evidence”,

the university’s hired lawyer Lynn Harnden argued at the hearing that the dean of science had hired Ms. Robinson solely to help him organize his office.

Justice Scott (J) expressed some reservation about this. His exchange with lawyer Lynn Harnden (H) went like this:

J: This is where I’m confused about Ms. Robinson – she’s the editor of a newspaper and she’s sent in to tidy up his office?

H: That’s what Dean Lalonde testified he engaged her to do. He explained she also had another hat on as editor of student newspaper and took certain initiatives related to Professor Rancourt’s activities.

J: Any evidence how she was chosen, or just happened to be there? Seems a little unusual to me, that’s the only thing I noticed.

H: That she had this dual hat on? Not on the record how he chose her, but did take her on to organize this voluminous evidence and she took other steps.

J: There’s a reference somewhere in the materials to how she equated her role as a young woman trying to trap a pedophile?

H: There was reference in Prof R’s testimony of that allegation. She didn’t testify so we don’t have that. We …

J: Where did that reference come from then? She never said that? It’s not part of the record?

H: No it’s only a statement by Professor Rancourt alleging that she had said that or it’s said somewhere I’m not aware – she didn’t testify. […]

“No it’s only a statement by Professor Rancourt alleging that she had said that …” Here, Mr. Harnden appears to have forgotten about a lot of damning exhibits (LINK), including Ms. Robinson’s "pedophile email" report to the dean of science and to counsel Michelle Flaherty (LINK), and appears to have also forgotten that the "pedophile email" was described in the union's factum for the very motion being heard (LINK, see paragraph 41(a)). This lapse of memory was acknowledged later in the hearing and corrected by the union’s lawyer.

Justice Scott was also somewhat baffled that the parties had allowed the labour arbitration to proceed without a recording or transcript of the lengthy hearings:

J: Let me stop you. I’m confused – in your affidavit material it indicates the nature of the hearing – you started off by giving us the breakdown on that – “28 days, 160 documents.... Rancourt there 13 days...” – doesn’t that fly in the face of the reason why arbitrations aren’t recorded? They’re recorded because they’re short, to the point, get done in reasonable time – but when you have a really complicated one such as this one, it would be necessary for anyone to make sense of it later on to have it recorded. Do you see what you’re faced with – or what I’m faced with – ultimately the Divisional Court faced with – how do you review, just take a look at it? Assume?
[…] My point was that technology is there that would allow for accurate recording. Might be helpful for someone sorting it out later. I also understand what this thing is built on.

Note that it is precisely because there is no transcript or recording that the union needed to file an affidavit about what occurred in the labour arbitration hearings in order to appeal the labour arbitration decision, exactly the affidavit that the university wants to strike.

Put simply, if the university succeeds in convincing the motions judge to strike the affidavit, then the union will be deprived of its necessary evidence about what it affirms actually happened at the arbitration, and the appeal will be almost guaranteed to fail.

The test for allowing the affidavit is that the affidavit evidence is otherwise not available, and is necessary to attack the arbitration decision on allowed grounds for appeal. In common language, this "test" is called a “no-brainer”.

The actual arguments as to whether or not to strike the union’s affidavit were very interesting, in that they diverged somewhat from this test.

The union argued that the affidavit evidence was not otherwise available, was essential for its appeal, and that the stated grounds for appeal were legally allowed grounds for appeal.

Mr. Harnden, for the university, argued that the affidavit should not be accepted because the university will contradict evidence in the affidavit with its own affidavit, later in the actual judicial review hearing, and because to accept the evidence in the affidavit would amount to the court inferring that the arbitrator had “blundered”:

H: Let’s just think about the significance – she’s [the affiant is] telling this court that the decision maker heard all of those comments of Professor Rancourt. She’s making it clear that the Arbitrator heard those concerns from Professor Rancourt, then the Applicant would have the court that the expert Arbitrator disregarded those concerns, disregarded comments by APUO in closing submissions, and blundered. They’re asking this court to draw the inference from the fact that the Arbitrator didn’t go out of his way to state ‘look I’m referring to fact that Professor Rancourt conceded accuracy because that means I can rely on those portions of the documents’. Given how rare it should be that affidavit evidence is heard, it would not be appropriate to make that exception in a case where this court would have to find, in effect, that Mr. Foisy [the arbitrator] didn’t exercise the expertise that should be held by any competent decision maker with respect to a document that has not been identified by a witness, and which has been identified with respect to its potential failure many times in the proceeding. We know Mr. Foisy heard Professor Rancourt’s comments. The court should not be too quick to infer that he made the blunder that my friend suggests.

Basically, as I read it, the university's hired lawyer Lynn Harnden is saying that the affidavit should be blocked here and not be seen by the panel of three Divisional Court judges that will hear and decide the actual appeal itself that claims arbitrator errors because to allow the affidavit to pass would be equivalent to Justice Scott “inferring” that the arbitrator “blundered”.

In other words, the affidavit evidence is so damning of the arbitrator's decision that it should not be allowed to be considered by those judging the arbitrator's decision.

Despite Mr. Harnden's high intelligence and despite his well crafted argument, the word “circular” comes to mind.

Overall, in my opinion, Mr. Harnden very ably worked to “shift” the question before the motions judge away from the rational and practiced legal test for accepting affidavit evidence and towards questions that properly belong to the appeal itself: 1. What evidence about what occurred during the arbitration is reliable, if it is opposed by a university’s own affidavit?; and 2. Did the arbitrator make errors, and were these errors serious enough for his decision to be set aside?

The university’s court-filed factum (i.e., written argument) for the motion is HERE-LINK.

The union’s court-filed factum for the motion is HERE-LINK.