THUNDER BAY – NEWS – Thunder Bay Police Services Board Member Georjann Morriseau held a press conference on Thursday to discuss the open letter she had released on January 17, 2020.
The press conference was hosted on Zoom and had almost 100 people including local and national media attending. At the start of the Zoom Call there were unknown individuals heard talking under an account that said it was Tbay Police, who were discussing changing the account name.
Morriseau’s lawyer, Chantelle Bryson outlined background information on the statement that Police Services Board Member, and former Chair of the Board Morriseau had released on Monday. This included what Bryson said was an unprecedented number of Human Rights Tribunal Complaints being filed by officers.
Morriseau asserts that, “The public needs to know that the TBPSB and TBPS administration has brought the Thunder Bay Police Service to the brink of collapse”.
In response to a question from NetNewsLedger, on that issue Morriseau said, “They are the brink of collapse because there’s no systemic remedies, there’s no systemic reform and change or anything there to empower the members of the service to be their best and do their best which then has a significant impact out in the city, out in our community, it impacts the service delivery”.
Morriseau has filed a human rights tribunal complaint against the Chief of Police, Deputy Chief of Police, Police Services Board Secretary John Hannam and the Board, citing racial issues directed to her as a board member.
Morriseay says, “It is in the public interest to know there is a growing number of TBPS members of service filing HRTO complaints against TBPS and TBPSB leadership. Currently, there are 8 filed complaints and 2 in process before the tribunal. This is completely unprecedented.”
In a statement issued Thursday evening, current Board Chair Kristen Oliver says, “The Thunder Bay Police Service Board is committed to ensuring that adequate and effective policing is provided to the community. We have not received notice from the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario of any applications. We have followed every process available to us under the Police Services Act to address and forward complaints to the appropriate bodies, including the Ontario Civilian Police Commission (OCPC). We also reject any allegation that the Board has met ‘secretly’ without member Morriseau present; no such meetings have occurred and these along with other allegations are without substance”.
“Further, we as a Board, are working hard to ensure we address the OIPRD recommendations, act in an ethical and transparent manner, and strengthen the relationship between the Association and the Service, while being financially prudent”.
A spokesperson for Ontario’s Solicitor General tells NetNewsLedger, “It is not appropriate for the ministry to comment publicly on a matter before the courts.”
The hour long press conference was ended when unknown individual “Zoom Bombed” the call taking over the screen to show pornographic images and videos. It is unknown at this time if police, either the Thunder Bay Police Service, the Ontario Provincial Police or the RCMP are investigating that hacking of the call.
There were almost 100 people on the call, including members of City Council, former and current Nishnawbe Aski Nation Grand Chiefs and Deputy Grand Chiefs and other leaders.
This is an ongoing and developing story.