There’s a petition being shared online that calls on Mayor Brian Saunderson to actually do his job as head of council and discipline the misbehaving Councillor Madigan. You can read my post about Madigan’s behaviour here, and download a PDF copy of the petition here (or download a Word version here).
I doubt he will heed it, but I admire the sentiment. After all, Saunderson has yet to show he actually cares about his role as mayor or even about the community he was elected to lead. And his favourite, Madigan, has been acting puerile for too long to change.
Don’t forget how last January Saunderson announced he was planning to leave his role before the term ended and run as the candidate MPP in the next provincial election (June 2022). At which point he basically abandoned his role as elected representative, metaphorically spitting on his oath of office, but he still takes the taxpayers’ paycheque as if he were entitled to it.
What the petitioners demand is an apology from both Madigan and Saunderson. The former for his behaviour, the latter for his lack of leadership in dealing with Madigan’s behaviour. The petition says:
The fact that you as chair chose not to address this matter is not acceptable. Choosing to ignore what happened, is the same as consenting to it. Then choosing to hide behind procedural protocols during the October 18th meeting shows a complete lack of moral judgement. We can only assume by your actions, that you believe Councillor Madigan’s behavior to be acceptable.
Whether he believes it acceptable or not, Saunderson is unlikely to discipline his Most Loyal Supporter, whose nickname “Lapdog Madigan” speaks volumes about their relationship. And don’t get me wrong: I have no affection for any of our inept, sycophantic councillors, female or male. But the behaviour of Madigan towards our female members is unacceptable by any standard.
The issue here is both Madigan’s misogynist behaviour towards female members of council, and Saunderson’s refusal to deal with it as a mayor should. I suggest anyone who expected Saunderson to behave as a mayor for the betterment of the community has been sorely mistaken from day one. It’s always been about his ambition to climb higher on the political pole, not about his service to the community. So expecting him to act like a mayor now is closing the barn door long, long after the horses have gotten out.
The petition also notes:
We cannot and will not let this matter be swept under the rug. We expect this incident to be called out and dealt with in the appropriate manner.
I admire the petitioners’ optimism. They hope that, with more signatures, more expression of public displeasure of Saunderson’s inaction and Madigan’s misbehaviour, these two will be forced to admit their failures and apologize. Personally, I suspect that’s naive to expect from such ambitious narcissists*. Someone needs to take this to the town’s integrity commissioner**.
The only way public displeasure may be properly expressed will be to NOT vote for either in upcoming elections.
Collingwood deserves better.
* Take a close look at the photo of the engraved oar, shown above. No mention of council, none of their signatures shown. Just Saunderson’s. As if he’s the only one who matters and the rest are just his forgettable flunkeys rather than elected representatives. I wonder if anyone else on council was even aware they were being excluded (none seem to have attended the company’s 10th anniversary event).
It’s All About Brian. Always has been, always will be while he holds any public office. Not even the Lapdog got a place on the oar. I hope the taxpayers didn’t pay for this.
And you’d think a “keepsake” of our town should have something to do with our community’s heritage and history. But since Saunderson is a paddler, our heritage seems forgotten while he hands out reminders of his hobbies instead. What arrogance.
** Principles Integrity: Jeffrey A. Abrams and Janice Atwood-Petkovski, firstname.lastname@example.org, 647-259-8697