I was perusing the Peak when I came across the article about the censure of qathet Regional District Electoral Area B director Mark Gisborne; being curious I researched what such an action could mean and what was done that would have this young voice in our elected regional district board on the receiving end of such an action, again [“qathet Regional District Board considers censure against director,” November 29].
After watching both the meetings from November 9 and 25, I was shocked, not by the conduct of Gisborne, but by the conduct of the board. Every time Gisborne tried to bring a new perspective that opposed or challenged the board, he was interrupted before his allotted time for discussion (10 minutes) was up, called to order and told his information and research were not germane, but other members could bring up the same topic and not one complaint.
It is clear that this elected official got the vote of his constituents and interest of other community members who don’t feel represented, but does not curry favour with the board, which apparently holds more weight than properly should in political proceedings.
If we are to believe Gisborne accused the board or a community member who wrote a letter of being “racist” the evidence just isn’t there; he neither listed a party nor person but rather was reading a definition from Wikipedia regarding exclusionary planning and was interrupted and called to order before his point could be made as to why there is importance to understand the repercussions of such standardly used policy planning.
To be blunt, the board is not treating Gisborne in the same respect as other members and it is clear they would rather try to silence him than listen, understand and decide with all information on the table. Further to the accusation that he called anyone racist, it is concerning to myself as one who works closely with vulnerable populations that the knee-jerk response from our elected officials is to take offence versus taking action and introspection on how our governing bodies can avoid and root out systemic racism and discrimination.
I hope to see our board members take up the mantle of leadership in this area with more willingness and humbleness in the future. It is very much still a problem and concern that needs to be addressed.
qathet Regional District