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Because it’s 2016: Leaked document details text messages received by former NDP nomination race candidate, Georgia Collins

As an ardent observer of politics and the political process I have always been keen to situations and incidents that may serve to turn more people off the political process.. and keep people out of it

Case in point was the September posting of Georgia Collins, who was campaigning to become the candidate for the BC NDP in the Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island.

Charlie Smith of the Georgia Straight touched on this today: http://www.straight.com/news/849096/vancouver-island-new-democrat-georgia-collins-withdraws-nomination-race-citing-sexism as a follow up to his original story found here: http://www.straight.com/news/785511/bc-ndp-mla-aspirant-georgia-collins-claims-she-received-death-threats-suspicious-fire .

Even not knowing Georgia Collins beyond her public and online presence, my concern back in September was great. At that time Georgia had already been dealing with serious issues of intimidation and harassment for over a year and it had seriously impacted her campaign as her original post stated.

The atmosphere for many female politicians in the public realm has been a big issue in 2016, where in the age and comfort of anonymous online accounts anyone seems to be able to say anything about female politicians.

There have been numerous stories of death threats, online abuse, sexism, harassment and it is an issue that may serve to deter many women from political service. It is without a doubt, an issue that must be taken seriously whether online, in the workplace or in the political arena.

This evening I am taking time to post even though I have family visiting, after receiving leaked documents that are legal in nature, along with internal communication among high level BC NDP officials and politicians.

After seeking legal advice, I am choosing to post one of the leaked documents with names redacted for two reasons.

First and foremost, I have safety concerns.

Two: I have concern for the process or lack thereof for those dealing with serious complaints in any capacity, in any and every political party. Why? Because it is 2016.

 

 

16 Comments on Because it’s 2016: Leaked document details text messages received by former NDP nomination race candidate, Georgia Collins

  1. So it seems this individual has acted terribly and realized his mistake. It is sad that despite political parties encouraging and promoting, in whatever way they can, women to get involved in politics there is always someone who for whatever reason, ignorance, sexism, emotional/mental difficulties ends up discouraging and/or hurting a female. We just have to keep on top if it and nip it in the bud, and educate and not let these occurrences, luckily few, discourage and distract. Our world will only get better. Happy 2017, happy work to all male or female gladiators who throw their energy in to the ring to defeat what female Caesar throws at them.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The NDP should have acted swiftly and firmly. By not doing so, they hung Georgia Collins out to dry and damaged their own credibility.

    The behavior, admitted to in the messaging, is not something that just suddenly happens one day, so I wonder; was there an elephant in the room?

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  3. when you used the reference to “female” MLAs you lost all credibility. We have a very useless MLA here and if she were a male we would still make the same comments about her… when the MLA or wannabe is a puppet, lies, deceives, has to get HO script… they are all useless….. your female comments leave much to be desired

    From: “Laila Yuile on people, politics and life in B.C.” To: indgary@yahoo.ca Sent: Thursday, December 29, 2016 8:49 PM Subject: [New post] Because it’s 2016: Leaked document details text messages received by former NDP nomination race candidate, Georgia Collins #yiv3929190677 a:hover {color:red;}#yiv3929190677 a {text-decoration:none;color:#0088cc;}#yiv3929190677 a.yiv3929190677primaryactionlink:link, #yiv3929190677 a.yiv3929190677primaryactionlink:visited {background-color:#2585B2;color:#fff;}#yiv3929190677 a.yiv3929190677primaryactionlink:hover, #yiv3929190677 a.yiv3929190677primaryactionlink:active {background-color:#11729E;color:#fff;}#yiv3929190677 WordPress.com | Laila Yuile posted: “As an ardent observer of politics and the political process I have always been keen to situations and incidents that may serve to turn more people off the political process.Case in point was the September posting of Georgia Collins, who was campai” | |

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  4. Actually Gary, I said female politicians, not female MLA’s… and you seem to have missed the national stories of several high profile politicians across Canada and the threats, comments and other vitriolic comments made about their sex, their looks, their body parts and other things that have absolutely no bearing on their performance as a politician. And rarely have I or others seen similar comments made about male politicians. I won’t do your work for you but I bet you know how to find them yourself.

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  5. Harassment, especially including death threats, is a violation of the Criminal Code of Canada. I trust that a complaint has therefore been filed and that the police are investigating. I would like to see the media confirm that fact with the complainant and/or the RCMP.

    As for the continuing sexually-charged harassment, it is unclear from her public statements whether this is mainly due to the actions of one particular individual inside the NDP, or a widespread campaign by many directed solely at her and none of the other riding candidates. If she’s the only target, finding the perpetrator(s) and motive would presumably be easier.

    In any case, Ms. Collins states that one of the main reasons for her withdrawal is the NDP’s lack of capacity to deal with her concerns. Whether by intent or unwittingly, she’s thrown the NDP under the bus for the situation. That’s ironic given the party also faces criticism for its gender equity policy regarding candidates.

    This is something the NDP had best get resolved in a hurry. We need the facts. The voting public is watching and no doubt wondering how, if the NDP cannot protect its own members, it would be capable of protecting the public if elected to govern.

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  6. Years ago I was with one of my married male supervisors and a saleperson …we were walking through a jobsite that she (the salesperson) was to quote on for a rather large , profitable (for her company) job.
    While we were going over the specifics of the job my supervisor suddenly stops, looks at this girl and says. “Has anyone told you your VERRRRRY attractive?”
    Crickets. Nobody spoke.
    I was shocked and embarrassed at the blatant , crass, totally unprofessional comment and she turned beet red.
    She ignored it.
    A few minutes later he turns and says , I’m serious! Has anyone ever told you you’re verrrrry attractive?”
    I looked at him and said ,
    “Where did THAT come from? Stop it ! You’re embarrassing the poor girl and she’s too worried about losing this contract to say anything…..and besides, YOUR MARRIED……!”
    ( Thats always the “killer” comment for losers like that when they’re trying their cheesy pickup lines)
    HE turned beet red and left us to finish the walk through.
    She thanked me and I apologized.
    I’d never seen him do that. I can only imagine the crap he would have tried if I wasnt there…….
    I was angry and embarrassed because the industry I was in was very small and word travelled fast….
    We finished up and she eventually got the job. She never came to another site visit without a coworker.
    My boss never said a word to me about it ….BUT
    I told everyone at work about his bs.
    He transferred to Calgary about a year later.
    Unfortunately these sleazy weasels get away with this crap for years because superiors either dont want to deal with it OR they’re doing it themselves.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hawgwash is correct, there is an elephant in the room, actions by the NDP are deliberate to dissuade Georgia from staying in the race. NDP and MLA Routley have a different candidate in mind. Georgia is seen as dangerous to the NDP, as the party requires a puppet that will vote and stay on message, Georgia will not yield and is the type of candidate that represents her constituents ahead of the party. Its unfortunate in the end voters loose, it is whats wrong with our ineffective corrupt party system. They have lost a donor and a voter in me, I’m out too

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    • Total agreement and its why honest, intelligent, hard working people are in short supply in political circles.
      They expect the “democratic” process to be….well….democratic.
      If they actually make it through the vetting process where party “toadies” will test their “loyalty” to the leader and the party…..then they are on to the election where they better tow the party message or get turfed.

      Everyone , everywhere is DISGUSTED with the status quo that we see in municipal, provincial and federal elections.
      Lies and promises wrapped up as lies. Huge amounts of Lobbyist money donated to the parties to ensure their special interests are deal with first( isnt that bribery and corruption?)
      No.
      “Truth” is a poor country cousin at the big city Ball on election night and “Honesty” was shown the back door ages ago. Big bucks rule and the majority of voters be damned( or in Christy’s case “Dammed”)

      Time to appoint accountants to run the dreary day to day operations and rule by referendum?

      Think of it.
      No insipid leaders like Gregor or Christy or Justin to make your teeth grind with every inane lie that spews forth from their smirking pie holes..

      No lying leaders.
      Just referendums to get things done.

      Denial is not just a river in my world but delusion is……..

      Happy New Year everyone.

      Now lets go get Christy booted from office.

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      • Yes to all.

        And thought I would post this here. Saw it online last night. Statement from Georgia Collins on why she went public. It’s clearly been a difficult situation for her and understandable. She makes clear she felt very conflicted about doing so and why. https://www.facebook.com/GeorgiaCollinsNDP/posts/1320480461336974?pnref=story

        ” I do not think anybody should be treated this way. And sexism is just a word that describes why it was more likely to happen to me.

        That’s it, that’s all.

        So what happened? Why am I withdrawing, or quitting, or giving up, surrendering, or prioritizing my well-being, or whatever anyone has decided to call it?

        It is because I don’t want to be silenced.

        That said, telling the truth leaves me, and others, incredibly vulnerable.

        It’s a bit of a conundrum.

        Telling the truth about this is important for my own sense of wholeness and well-being. It also serves my desire to stand up for those who experience this and are too afraid to speak out, or simply choose not to, or whatever their very valid reasons are for doing whatever they’ve done with their own experiences.

        Telling the truth, in this case, also has the potential to negatively impact an entire group of people who work so hard to do the very same things I value.

        I chose to run for the NDP because it is full of people who care deeply about equity and equality. I know that many people involved in this party have lived experience of oppression and poverty and are looking to lead with empathy. That is something I value and want to see more of in this world.

        I am saddened that we are impacted by the actions of a very small number of individuals who are using outdated tactics, and am also unwilling to sweep this under the rug.

        That is what makes the hypocrisy of my experience so challenging to deal with.

        Like many aspiring politicians, I want to be of some use to my community and to society. Telling my lived experience is how I do this.

        I could have continued in my race, and I could have won. But to do so, I would have had to be silent about sexism and harassment. And maybe that would have been smart; to hold off on speaking out until I had more power to deal with these kind of issues. Regardless, it is not what felt right for me. I could not move forward choosing silence.

        I think it is more important right now that all of our institutions look inward and deal with the problem of sexism, misogyny and patriarchy (and racism and classism and ableism and any and all oppressive structures at play today). And for the institutions not willing to look in the mirror, I hope there are people willing to step forward and say so, even at the expense of their own opportunity and especially at the expense of the status quo.

        I am going to place my trust in a new way of politics that is not yet familiar to us. It is a way that involves transparency, acknowledgement, consent, honesty, collaboration and as I said before, a great deal of empathy.

        Thank you to everyone.”

        Like

        • To be honest I somewhat scratch my head at Georgia Collins statements about “racism and classism and ableism and any and all oppressive structures at play today”
          While there was obviously a neanderthal from the New Democrat Party that thought his crass, creepy, juvenile sexual “advances” were brilliant and harmless…
          In this day and age . Totally unacceptable. So why didnt the NDP deal with it?
          What else was going on here? Bullying? Another candidate the NDP wanted in that riding?
          Did the “established NDP member realize Collins just too “independant” in her thinking for the them?
          It seems a tad more complicated than a drunken pig, drunk texting after midnite.
          Lets forget the “isms” for a minute
          I really think it just boils down to “power” .
          It takes big money to get elected.
          Big business or Big Labour pony up to the trough to pour millions of dollars of loot into the various election party “war chests”
          And they’re not doing that out of the goodness of their hearts.
          Debts are expected to be repaid.
          Who ever has majority control of the govt for 4 years gets to spend the taxpayers money, any way they(or their financial supporters) see fit.
          Does anyone see a major conflict of interest here? With both parties recieving millions of $….
          Our current (woefully out of date) political system of “majority of seats rules the roost” …..the leader of the party that wins MUST get absolute subservience from their elected party members OR there is the danger of a “free” vote( silly, naive me , and here I though all “votes” were free and unencumbered of influence) causing the fall of the sitting govt and another painful charade of an election must be inflicted upon the voting populace…..and more millions of dollars in the election trough
          Thus we have the Party “whip” who tells the sheep in the Legislature ( or Parliament) when to vote and how to vote.
          ‘Ableism, racism, classism” ??????????? “oppressive structures”?
          Nothing so complicated as that Georgia.
          Just dirty, down in the mud, politics
          Male or Female. Elected MLA’s are expected to act like good little school children and do as they are told and only speak when they are allowed to. Its that simple.
          And other than the idiot on her election comittee who persisted with unwanted, idiotic advances……….that were EMAILED…..(geez at least the Libs have learned to use “Post its”)
          Im just surprised that Georgia Collins didnt realize that this is how the game is played
          Democracy is dead.
          Stick a fork in it.
          Welcome to 2017

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  8. Agreed, per follow the leader, blindly. Bob Simpson, a great politician, was a perfect case.He criticised a Carol James speech, justifiably, in my humble opinion and the NDP kicked him out of caucus. He continued as an Independent MLA until the next election where he ran again, as an independent. The NDP chose to run a candidate therefor splitting the vote and low and behold in walked a Liberal who immediately was awarded a Ministry. I hope that Ms. Collins proceeds with legal action. Furthermore, ‘nonconfidencevote’ you have a point.

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  9. Money, Favouritism and Power

    Politics 101

    Excellent article from the Tyee with an interesting comment about BC’s lack of lobbying Rules.

    https://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2016/12/29/Trudeau-Cash-for-Access-Fundraisers/

    Like

  10. Gary, I would suggest you didn’t get the point in Laila’s post. As to what is said to and about politicians, its not nice. One of the T.V. news shows ran a series of pictures of federal politicians and they read out what had been e-mailed to them. Then they did another one which included male politicians.

    The e-mails they read out were what can be described as hurtful, nasty, rude, obnoxious, etc. They didn’t have anything to do with how they performed the job. That’s the problem. I’m a leftie, so no love lost on Conservative M.P.s, but I was disgusted at what had been written to them. The majority of them are out there trying to do a job, they think they can do. To criticise them for their work, fine, its fair game. to criticise them for how they look, not so much. To include criticism based on their sex, just isn’t on. If some one is a lousy politician, they are a lousy politician. You don’t have to be a lousy politician and female. You can be a lousy politician and male. Being a lousy politician has nothing to do with being straight, gay, trans., female, male, undecided, etc.

    The only time the sex of the politician may become an issue is if they campaigned on the basis of being what ever they are or identify with and then don’t deliver on those issues. i.e. I’m “whatever” and I will work for your rights in this area, then votes against bills on the subject or fails to support the issues. Of course it would not be appropriate to carry on about how the politicians looked, talked, etc. Calling a politicians ugly, fat, etc. just isn’t on.

    enough of my rant, HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE! Laila, enjoy your first New Year’s in your new home. Its always fun to say Happy New Year to the deer. Hey, if the kids go to sleep, the deer will at least hang around long enough to look at you and return the greeting! eaf

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  11. Very interesting discussion. I don’t know the ‘right’ way to handle this kind of situation, but Ms Collins comes across as a very classy lady. I really want to hear something better from the NDP or I’ll have to reconsider my political donations and votes.

    Like

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