On March 29, 2010, Julian Ammirantes employment was terminated by Georgian College. The Department of Political Science requests that the termination be rescinded, and that Mr. Ammirantes spring time courses be reinstated.
It is our understanding that Georgian Colleges termination of Mr. Ammirantes employment was based on an incident involving Mr. Ammirante and a student employed by Georgian College. In Mr. Ammirantes assessment, the student engaged in illegal behaviour during the Ontario Public Services Employees Union Local ratification vote. Mr. Ammirante informed the student that his actions were in breach of several statutes of the Ontario Labour Relations Act 1995, including s. 70 (interference), s. 76 (intimidation), and s. 79.8 (interference with the opportunity to vote). The student persisted with his illegal actions, and Mr. Ammirante insisted that he cease and desist.
As an individual, as an employee of the college, and as a citizen, Mr. Ammirante was fully within his rights to act accordingly in order to uphold Ontario statutes in his workplace. Further, the incident in question was so minor that it warrants no further comment. In fact, no complaint was filed against Mr. Ammirante, and after further investigation by Laurentian Vice President John Isbister, it was found that the incident warranted no penalties, reprisal, or disciplinary action.
In consequence, the Department feels that Mr. Ammirante was terminated without cause.
In addition, the Department also feels that the termination contravenes the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) of December 23, 2009 between Laurentian University and Georgian College. The MOA stipulates that all academic staff teaching Laurentian University courses at Georgian College, regardless of who is the employer of record, as well as Laurentian University courses and programs offered at Georgian College, shall be governed by Laurentian University academic policies and procedures. Georgian did not act according to the termination conditions of the Laurentian collective agreement, nor did it consult with the Department of Political Science.
Thirdly, the manner in which Mr. Ammirante was treated and the lack of due diligence on the part of Georgian College contravene several Provincial Labour Statues as well as the Ontario Employment Standards Act (2000). We feel that Mr. Ammirantes employment was terminated in an act of egregious bad faith. It has long been established in Canadian and Ontario labour law that all employers must uphold the Ontario Labour Relations Act.
Finally, the Department believes Julian was terminated as an act of reprisal for his expressed views. Over the past few months, Julian has openly made known his opinions that Laurentian students have the right to establish an independent student association. The Georgian administration has consistently opposed such student actions. The underlying reason for Julians termination was his comments about students rights to freedom of association and speech on the Georgian campus. Such reprisal contravenes the Memorandum of Agreement of December 23, 2009 which extends the academic freedom provisions of Laurentian Universitys collective agreement.
We are requesting that Laurentian University take immediate and appropriate measures to reverse this situation, uphold the collective agreement, and reinstate Mr. Ammirantes courses.