Letter: Retired police officer and veteran Colin Pick weighs in on the LU debacle

A call for the prime minister to intervene where the province has failed

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following letter has been sent to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and has been reprinted here at the author’s request.

Dear Prime Minister Trudeau:

I am writing you to solicit your help with the travesty of justice that is taking place at Laurentian University, Sudbury, where the same individuals who are part and parcel of the financial wrong doing and misappropriating of funds at Laurentian University (LU), were allowed to surreptitiously manipulate the use of the creditors, companies, protection act, to one: ensure that they stayed in power; two, to ensure that they continued getting their high salary; and three, staying in power allowed the time to cover-up some of their misdeeds, if at all possible, whilst going on a slash and cut rampage, with no sense of humanity or compassion for faculty, student programming, staff, the prestigious name of the university, or the Sudbury community at large.

There are dozens of similar articles on a continuing basis, but I am greatly annoyed that because the current board was allowed to manipulate the course of justice, and set a precedent with a public learning institution being able to go insolvent, having no regard for three other federated universities, all with a world class reputation is wrong, especially when CCAS restricting, is not within the meaning of the Act; and Companies Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) is doing great injustice to the Sudbury community and Canada-wide educational institutions.

To name but a few of the programs cut unnecessarily: architecture, environmental and ecology studies, global regreening practices, health, medicine, amphibian diseases, midwifery, mining technology, conservation and biochemistry, global warming and climate changes.

LU was also known for its tri-cultural, English, French and Indigenous studies, as well as gender, sexuality and equality studies, besides many other program cuts that were devastating and hurtful to student learning in higher education.

Sir, as per my enclosed letter, some members of the current and previous board at LU should have been subject to a criminal investigation, first and foremost, because of bursary and other monies that have vanished into thin air with no one held accountable. That in itself is bad enough, but the fact that this board was allowed to set a precedent, that they now use to hide behind the CCAA proceedings which is not transparent and blocks other means of intervention, is an absolute farce, which shows on a daily basis in Sudbury, to be callous, hurtful and uncaring to the faculty, student body, staff, and the people of Sudbury.

Further, this CCAA process is obviously the wrong path to take, other than the board’s intent to take us all down that path to protect their own interests and not in the best interests of LU. It also makes your government look like fools if you stand back and do nothing any longer!

Sir, this situation is somewhat like in the old days, where the man with an axe, wearing a black hood, representing LU board, is saying “chop,” “chop,” “next one up.” As the prisoner, representing the Liberal government says, “But Mr. head man, the guillotine appears not to be working right; would it not be better to wait until it’s fixed?”

Mr. Trudeau, please don’t wait until Sudbury has its head cut off because we have lost so much already. Call for a stay of proceedings and stop these people being able to manipulate the justice system to suit their own means, because it’s like the blind leading the blind. In conclusion, the people of Sudbury need your help and intervention now and without delay, so please take the necessary steps to do what is right over what is currently morally wrong, very unfair and very unjust.

Sir, these people have gotten away with pulling the wool over the eyes of the LU community, the people of Sudbury and the law of the land, so please step in and allow criminal proceedings to bring the truth to light, whilst an independent interim board could do a much more fair, honest and unbiased job of creative restructuring.

Yours respectfully,

Colin Pick,

A concerned citizen and retired police officer

Capreol