I am distressed to learn that many of Sarnia’s senior administrators have resigned, presumably in response to working conditions at City Hall.
This will affect how City Hall functions going forward.
When I sought a seat on city council in last year’s election I stated that I have a servant’s heart and a scientific mind. I was excited by the possibility of being a councillor and representing the Sarnia I know and love.
This was a truly emotional vote for residents and I heard rhetoric on both sides of the great divide as I travelled the streets and listened to people’s wishes and desires.
I have read the reports on workplace harassment from cover to cover to understand what transpired, the complaints, and the basis of the assessments. I believe there is, and was, harassment in City Hall and that it isn’t new.
Speaking to the intent of Mayor Mike Bradley’s behaviour; a good heart and good intentions are wonderful, but if the tactics to get things done are unamenable, they are unacceptable and must change.
I’m sure we can all agree people should feel safe, valued and respected in their careers and jobs. I have met with the mayor and have heard those sentiments from him. I agree wholeheartedly.
How do we support our staff? We start with harassment training, as the mayor has mandated. I cannot say why he didn’t take training before, but am encouraged by this change.
Secondly, the security features at City Hall should be left in place to show that staff safety is important. Changes were made to ensure all staff are safe from outside threats, as well as separated from an atmosphere of harassment.
I have read about the upgrades and they were necessary. We must always honour our Code of Conduct and Ontario workplace guidelines.
Sarnia, I beg you to educate yourself on all sides of the debate; read the reports and support our mayor as he guides the new council. Do not rely on Facebook stories, your neighbour’s opinion or the media as your only source of knowledge. Understand the facts so that you know the issues affecting our city.
Mr. Mayor, I support you, as you are the elected official chosen by the people. Make us proud; show us that you are the person we believe you to be.
None of us is perfect; we have all been admonished or reprimanded. The true meaning of strength and leadership can be measured in one’s response to correction. We are on your side, as you witnessed in the showing of the polls.
“Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more.” Luke 12:48.
Sarnia is watching and awaits your victory over this new challenge.
Gail White is a long-time Sarnia resident with a servant’s heart and a scientific mind.