Kamloops mayor's release of confidential report 'unlawful': city councillor | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kamloops mayor's release of confidential report 'unlawful': city councillor

Image Credit: SUBMITTED/Reid Hamer-Jackson

The mayor of Kamloops released a confidential investigation into workplace bullying last week and city councillors are calling the move "unlawful."

Mayor Reid Hamer-Jackson was the subject of the investigation carried out by the Integrity Group, a Vancouver firm that deals with employment disputes.

He finally came into possession of a copy of that report just last week, months after the investigation was completed. The existence of that investigation was reported last spring, then Kamloops This Week reported its details in the fall.

The mayor maintains he hadn't seen the report, despite months of asking for it, until it was leaked to him last week. He doesn't know who leaked the report to him, only that it arrived in his mailbox.

READ MORE: City councillor explains why Kamloops mayor barred from suspending employees

Councillor Mike O'Reilly spoke on behalf of council as he said the release of that confidential report put the city at legal risk upwards of $1 million.

The report includes "extremely sensitive personal information" about some staff members, putting the city at legal risk for constructive dismissal, defamation and breach of privacy lawsuits, he said.

It includes details of claims that four employees were bullied, harassed and demeaned by Hamer-Jackson within weeks of his term.

O'Reilly wouldn't say whether the City is taking legal action against the mayor in response or comment on Hamer-Jackson's potential legal risk. 

O'Reilly spoke with reporters just ahead of Tuesday's council meeting. The mayor was not immediately available to comment.

Hamer-Jackson didn't take part in the investigation, unsuccessfully insisting the investigator send him summaries of each allegation against him before he agreed to a meeting.

The Integrity Group report has now been widely reported, detailing claims that led to restrictions against the mayor and how he deals with staff. Although the report includes recommendations, city council has not released all the details of the mayor's restrictions that arose from the investigation.

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