White Rock’s sole mayoral challenger says a CBC news report this week – detailing a grievance he filed against the B.C. Teachers’ Federation after he was fired for allegedly threatening to “go postal” on his co-workers – is inaccurate and sensational.
“Of course I’m still running for mayor,” Bradshaw told Peace Arch News during a brief phone conversation Wednesday.
“And I’m looking forward to Monday’s (all-candidates) meeting very much (see page 8), and I’m waiting to see if the coalition and Mr. Baldwin have the courage to show up.”
Bradshaw was featured on television news Tuesday night, after copies of an arbitration decision were anonymously distributed in recent weeks to various media.
Incumbent councillor Helen Fathers – who was among 10 people to sign Bradshaw’s nomination papers – said sharing of the document “has all the appearance of a smear campaign formulated by somebody close to the BCTF.”
“I think it is shocking but (not) surprising that this has ‘suddenly’ showed up,” she said by email.
Among other things, the 46-page document outlines allegations that Bradshaw, in May 2012, “made statements… to the effect that he was thinking of ‘going postal’” at his workplace. As well, that he had made “derogatory and obscene comments” about the BCTF’s director of human resources.
After considering evidence that included submissions Bradshaw was “not in any mental shape to be at work” at the time the statements were made, the arbitrator found his termination was justified “on a non-culpable basis.”
Bradshaw refused to discuss the matter in detail with PAN, stating “my response is in writing” – referring to comments emailed moments before – and that he is “waiting to see if you have the journalistic integrity – you, (reporter) Tracy Holmes, do you have the journalistic integrity to print my response to your query?”
In his email, Bradshaw states he was “the victim of chronic bullying & harassment, not the perpetrator of any action against anybody.”
“The fact of the matter is, there never was any threat of any kind to anyone… at any time,” Bradshaw writes.
“As President of the Union of Teachers’ Federation Employees, I stood up to bullying & harassment. I advocated for employees who were being mistreated, distressed causing illness. As a result of my advocacy efforts, I have lost $250,000 in salary & benefits.”
Bradshaw states that in his campaign he is advocating for the “many citizens who have reported being bullied and disrespected in their dealings with city hall administration… on behalf of those citizens whose issues have not been attended to.”
Fathers told PAN she wishes Bradshaw well and hopes “the public sees this for what it is.”
In a Tuesday evening post to his campaign website, incumbent mayor Wayne Baldwin also comments on the “interesting and alarming revelations,” noting he hopes the issue doesn’t lead to a repeat of a situation years ago – in which one sitting councillor was charged with assault for striking another councillor with a pen. The charge was later stayed.
Baldwin says the situation “made us a national laughing stock.”