THE JOURNEY, WITH J.D. BOOTH

As election looms, beware of candidates who promise to ‘tear down the wall’

There is good reason for a separation from 'political wing' and those who are keeping the City running

(Travis Poland/Lambton Shield)

It’s not quite a month before citizens of local municipalities begin casting their votes for candidates but the most visible (and potentially confusing) of all races is the one for Mayor of Sarnia.

Incumbent candidate Mike Bradley, who in past campaigns has basically coasted to re-election, appears to be facing an opponent who very well may be successful.

Anne Marie Gillis, who I interviewed for a podcast that will run this Wednesday (Sept. 12), responded to a formal invitation that was sent to both her and Bradley on August 29.

I’m still waiting for a response from the Mayor.

For the record, I also invited the Mayor to be a guest on the Spotlight podcast in early January. He had no time to do so, citing a “heavy commitments.” Pushed to consider some time in the future, he came back with “not able to give you any dates.”

As the election nears, I believe it’s important that my readers/listeners hear from the two strongest candidates.

That said, I can’t compel anyone to have a conversation.

When I spoke to Gills, recorded Thursday, September 6, it became clear that she is a strong and capable candidate for the position she seeks to hold.

We know Bradley has years of experience and has served well in the role. What appears to be missing is a sense of contrition when it comes to allegations of harassment and workplace bullying that resulted in sanctions being imposed under the provincial Occupational Health and Safety Act.

In fact, Bradley was subject to a “requirement to participate in coaching and sensitivity training on harassment, effective management techniques, and anger management” that took place on November 7, 2016 (taken from an update report to Sarnia City Council on May 29, 2017).

He did not attend.

Is this really the type of Mayor we want to elect next month?

Having “boundaries” at City Hall provides a safe workplace for those who work on our behalf. Past evidence would suggest those boundaries will remain (and should remain) regardless of the election outcome.

And let’s be clear: NOT putting in place the physical separations would very likely have resulted in members of City Council being subject to their own legal penalties for ignoring the issues before them.

I encourage you to listen to my upcoming interview with Anne Marie Gillis, and share the podcast with your network.

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