Media story about VIU

November 13, 2017 - 9:30am

You may hear or see discussions or stories about VIU based on an article in the Globe and Mail, so we wanted to share our perspective. First and foremost, we take the safety and well-being of our students, faculty and staff very seriously. We are confident that we have measures in place to ensure the safety of our campuses, and policies and procedures to support our community.

We are also confident the University took appropriate and reasonable actions to respond to concerns that were raised and to protect the safety and well-being of our campus community. This matter was carefully and thoughtfully investigated by an experienced and legally trained external investigator who determined that actions of the University were reasonable. We can also confirm that our risk and threat assessment protocols were followed. The purpose of these protocols is to identify and eliminate or mitigate risks.

While the University acknowledges the right of individuals to raise issues of concern to them, we do not agree with Ms. Roth’s characterization of the events reported in the Globe and Mail story: 

  • Due to privacy law, Ms. Roth has not been privy to all of the complexities at issue in this case nor is she aware of all of the steps that were taken to investigate and respond to these concerns.
  • Her statements about the ending of her employment are also inaccurate. The University does not terminate employees for voicing or investigating matters concerning student and staff safety, nor does it retaliate against employees.
  • The University is confident in its response, and will if necessary defend its actions and decisions in legal proceedings related to this matter. 

We appreciate that you, the media and the public share our interest in community safety. VIU is subject to the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, which prevents the University from disclosing personal information of individuals who raise complaints and those who are the subject of a complaint.

For these reasons, we cannot comment on the specifics of the news story or fully explain what actions the University took. A key component of our safe and supportive learning environment is respect for student, faculty and staff privacy. It is important that you and those around you are comfortable speaking up if necessary and know your privacy will be appropriately respected.

VIU will continue to foster a caring and respectful community to ensure a high-quality teaching, learning and working environment.

If you have any questions or concerns, please email presidentsmessagenovember2017@viu.ca.

If you have experienced, heard or seen anything that violates our policies, please reference our Safety and Security related policies here.


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