BCTF Finds Bias in BC Government Inside Appointment of Mediator

by Stephen Petrina on April 5, 2012

The BC Teachers’ Federation filed an application to the Labour Relations Board to quash the 28 appointment of Dr. Charles Jago as mediator in the current labour dispute.  “On April 2, BCTF President Susan Lambert wrote to Dr. Jago respectfully requesting that he step down as mediator, citing numerous factors that create an apprehension of bias. One day later, Dr. Jago wrote back, saying he declined to withdraw.”  Lambert argued that “this government has legislated a biased process and appointed a mediator who not only lacks experience, but evidently lacks impartiality as well.”  The BCTF is seriously concerned with insider connections to the BC Liberal Party.  In 2006, Jago was on commission to former Premier Gordon Campbell’s Progress Board.  The BCTF reports that Jago’s “findings clearly foreshadow positions taken by the BC Public School Employers’ Association at the bargaining table and also reflect policy directions laid out in Bill 22.” Lambert continued, saying “bbviously there is a strong linkage between Dr. Jago’s thinking, and the bargaining and policy objectives of this government.”  Jago also admitted to the BCTF that he was “given the opportunity to review and ‘to wordsmith’ a draft of” the draconian Bill 22 before it was tabled in the Legislature. “This was the very legislation he would later be expected to interpret impartially as a mediator.”   Jago was appointed on 28 March, shortly after the anti-labour legislation was passed.

Read More: BCTF News Release