Thursday, June 22, 2006

Soft Harassment In The Workplace

Harassment comes in many forms and at times, I think it becomes very easy to feel powerless against it. I am no legal expert, so what I'm about to say could be shit, but I really think there is such a thing as overt harassment (objective and documented) and soft harassment (subjective and undocumented, such as the spreading of lies or rumours for the purposes of intimidation).

As defined by the Canadian Human Rights Commission, “[h]arassment, whether by a supervisor or co-worker, creates a barrier to equality by demeaning its victims, interfering with their ability to work effectively and, in some instances, even forcing them to resign.”

Taking that a little further, I looked up what is the employer’s responsibility towards harassment and it reads: “The employer is responsible for any harassment that occurs in the workplace. It is the employer’s duty to:

Make it clear that harassment will not be tolerated;

Establish a harassment policy;

Make sure every employee understands the policy and procedures for dealing with harassment;
Inform supervisors and managers of their responsibility to provide a harassment-free work environment;

Investigate and correct harassment problems as soon as they come to light, even if a formal complaint has not been received.

The employer should be prepared to take appropriate disciplinary action against an employee found to have harassed someone.”

But what do you do when there is no concrete evidence of harassment? What happens when your boss is totally committed to making your life a living hell by being a first class dick just so you quit? What if he or she does so by spreading fictitious lies or telling your colleagues rumours about you with the hopes that it gets back to you? What if your boss is doing this to intimidate you, but there is no concrete evidence? Then what happens? What are your options? And what if no one listens?

Personally, I'm tired of witnessing this bullshit and it's time more employers step up to the plate and protect their employees as opposed to covering their asses. We all know that productivity increases when employees are in a nurturing environment. I think employers are definitely beginning to make the leap by trying to create this "nurturing environment", but sometimes I just get the feeling that these are hollow attempts, high on rhetoric and low on action.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Pot Heads Of The World, Unite!

While organizing for Michael Ignatieff, I came across a woman who has been working hard with community activists and lawyers to legalize marijuana.

While I am a huge advocate for the legalization of marijuana for one reason or another, I think the biggest reason why I believe marijuana should be legalized is because the drug trafficking industry can be quite dangerous and I have met countless people who have been directly affected by it, regardless of whether or not they are involved in it. If you live in BC, or more specifically, the GVA or the Fraser Valley, chances are you have seen just how insiduous, nasty and trecherous this industry can be.

Something needs to change and so I wanted to post a resolution that this woman created.


WHEREAS Cannabis, its preparations, derivatives and similar synthetic preparations including:

(1) Cannabis resin;

(2) Cannabis (marihuana);

(3) Cannabidoiol (2-[3-methyl-6-(1methylethenyl)-2-cyclohexen-1-yl]-5]pentyl-1,3- benzenediol);

(4) Cannabinol (3-n-amyl-6,6,9-trimethyl 1-6-dibenzopyran-1-o1);

(5) Nabilone ((+)-trans-3-(1,1, dimethylheptyl- 6,6a,7,8,10,10a-hexahydro-1- hydroxy6,6-dimethyl-0H-dibenzo[b,d]pyran-9-one);

(6) Pyrahexyl (3-n-hexyl-6,6,9-timethyl, 7,8,9,10-tetrahydro-6-dibenzopyran-1-of);

(7) Tetrahydrocannabinol (tetrahydro-6,6,9-trimethyl-3-pentyl-6H-dibezol [b,d]pyran- 1-ol);

(7.1) 3-(1,2-dimethylheptyl)-7,8,9,10-tetrahydro-6,6,9-trimethyl-6H-dibenz[b,d] pyran-I-of (DMHP)

but not including

(8) Non-viable cannabis seed, with the exception of its derivatives;

(9) Mature cannabis stalks that do not include leaves, flowers, seeds or branches and fiber derived from such stalks is a controlled substance pursuant to the provisions of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (Schedule II)

WHEREAS despite that prohibition the production, including manufacturing, synthesizing or using any means of altering the chemical or physical properties of the substance, or cultivating, propagating or harvesting the substance or any living thing from which the substance may be extracted or otherwise obtained and includes an offer to produce Marihuana and trafficking in Marihuana, including selling, administering, giving, transferring, transporting, sending, delivering or selling an authorization to obtain Marihuana of offering to do any of the above is a flourishing industry;

WHEREAS the Royal Canadian Mounted Police have identified the Fraser Valley in the Province of British Columbia as a major source of Marihuana production and trafficking;

WHEREAS the Royal Canadian Mounted Police have determined that illegal activity related to the production and trafficking of Marihuana, including but not necessarily being limited to the trace in illegal weapons, laundering of proceeds of crime, importation of other prohibited or controlled substances specifically but not limited to cocaine and heroin, smuggling of illegal immigrants and violent offences such as assault are directly related to the marihuana industry;

WHEREAS the Royal Canadian Mounted Police have determined that the illegal production and trafficking in Marihuana typically occurs in residences and out buildings such as barns or sheds within the Fraser Valley of the Province of British Columbia and specifically within the federal riding of Langley;

WHEREAS the Royal Canadian Mounted Police have determined that the production and trafficking of Marihuana is directly related to theft of electricity, extensive property damage and fires caused by improper electrical installation;

WHEREAS the Royal Canadian Mounted Police have determined that they have inadequate resources to address the production and trafficking of Marihuana and the other incidental illegal activity;

WHEREAS the Royal Canadian Mounted Police report that more than $8 Billion of Marihuana produced and trafficked in British Columbia is traded across the border of Canada and the United States of America each year;

WHEREAS the federal riding of Langley is directly adjacent to the United States of America;

WHEREAS the problems associated with the prohibition of Marihuana are analogous to the problems associated with the historical prohibition of alcohol;

WHEREAS the chronic use of Marihuana leads to psychological and physical addiction of users;

WHEREAS chronic users of Marihuana may be socially marginalized;

WHEREAS the chronic use of Marihuana has been identified as a health risk to users;

WHEREAS the chronic use of alcohol leads to psychological and physical addiction of users;

WHEREAS chronic users of alcohol may be socially marginalized;

WHEREAS the chronic use of alcohol has been identified as a health risk to users;

WHEREAS residents in Canada actively and legally produce wine, beer and other alcohol beverages in their residences and at licensed business premises;

WHEREAS the Provinces of Canada control the production and distribution of alcohol and collect taxes;

WHEREAS the former Minister of Health, John Munro has, in the past, given active consideration to the legalization and control of the production and distribution of Marihuana;

BE IT RESOLVED that this convention endorse a policy to remove Marihuana from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and to add Marihuana to the legislation of the Provinces to permit production and distribution of Marihuana within Canada and to establish a tax collection scheme for the purpose of controlling and taxing the production and distribution of Marihuana by way of enacting Provincial legislation analogous to the Liquor Control Act.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Iggs Is Gonna Take It

You heard it here first! :)

I know there is plenty of bullshit being spun by bloggers on how great their candidate is. It's easy to think that it's just empty propoganda, but I assure you that I use the utmost sincerity when talking about Michael Ignatieff.

As I truck along with the Ignatieff's campaign, I continue to be impressed with the organization. I'm learning so much and this is truly one of the best experiences I've had in politics.

The people a leadership candidate has around him or her, are very much indicative of the person they are. I've been lucky enought to have met a lot of people on the campaign in BC and I am totally impressed with the morale, the integrity and the work ethic. The people Ignatieff keeps close to him are good, quality folk and ultimately, it's their character that has confirmed it for me that I am working for the right candidate.

Here's a look at some of Ignatieff's support across Canada:

Newfoundland and Labrador
- Paul Antle, Past Candidate (2006) - St. John's East
- Tom McGrath, Treasurer - Liberal Party of Canada (Newfoundland and Labrador), 1999 Provincial Candidate - St. John’s East
- Todd Russell, MP Labrador

- Hon. Wayne Easter, MP Malpeque
- Hon. Joe McGuire, MP Egmont

Nova Scotia
- Hon. Geoff Regan, MP Halifax West
- Rodger Cuzner, MP Cape Breton-Canso
- Robert Thibault, MP West Nova

New Brunswick
- Jean-Claude D’Amours, MP Madawaska-Restigouche
- Sen. Rose-Marie Losier-Cool
- Paul Zed, MP Saint John

- Hon. Denis Coderre, MP Bourassa
- Sen. Roméo Dallaire, retired Lieutenant-General
- Raymonde Folco, MP Laval—Les Îles
- Marcel Proulx, MP Hull Aylmer
- Pablo Rodriguez, MP Honore-Mercier and former President of LPCQ

- John Cannis, MP Scarborough Centre
- Paul Szabo, MP Mississauga South
- Hon. Mauril Bélanger, MP Ottawa-Vanier
- Marlene Catterall, former MP Ottawa West—Nepean
- Hon. Elinor Caplan, former Cabinet Minister, former MP Thornhill
- Milton Chan, Vice President Policy - Young Liberals of Canada
- Ruby Dhalla, MP Brampton-Springdale
- Hon. Albina Guarnieri, MP Mississauga East-Cooksville
- Susan Kadis, MP Thornhill
- Hon. Derek Lee, MP Scarborough-Rouge River
- John Maloney, MP Welland
- Hon. John McCallum, MP Markham-Unionville
- Hon. John McKay, MP Scarborough-Guildwood
- Christian Provenzano, 2006 Liberal Candidate - Sault Ste. Marie
- Lloyd St. Amand, MP Brant
- Roger Valley, MP Kenora
- Hon. Elinor Caplan, former federal and provincial cabinet minister
- Hon. Jim Peterson, MP Willowdale
- Sen. David Smith

- Sharon Appleyard, President of Liberal Party of Canada (Manitoba
- Hon. Raymond Simard, MP Saint Boniface

- Hon. Pana Papas Merchant, Senator

- Cory Lynch, Elections Readiness Chair - Alberta Young Liberals
- Sen. Grant Mitchell, Former Leader - Alberta Liberal Party

- Hon. Keith Martin, MP Esquimalt - Juan de Fuca
- Hon. Stephen Owen, MP Vancouver Quadra