November 16, 2017 6:08 pm
Updated: November 17, 2017 11:38 am

Leeds and Thousand Islands CAO sues councillor and Corus Entertainment for $1 million

The top staffer at the Township of Leeds and the Thousand Islands is suing a township councillor for allegedly defaming him. CAO Greg Borduas claims John Paul Jackson defamed him during multiple allegations that he made online and on-camera to Corus Entertainment about two in-camera meetings this past spring. The CAO is seeking $1 million in damages. Morganne Campbell explains.

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The Chief Administrator of Leeds and the Thousand Islands has filed a defamation lawsuit against township Councillor John Paul Jackson and Corus Entertainment, the parent company of CKWS TV and Global News.

In a statement of claim filed last month with the Superior Court of Justice, the lawyer representing Borduas wrote that Jackson made “false and willfully misleading statements regarding the merits of the allegations made against Mr. Borduas.”

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While vying to save the jobs of two senior staffers, Jackson went public with allegations of workplace harassment, some sexual in nature, against the township’s chief administrator.

The allegations were made in a confidential document sent to township council in May.

READ MORE: High-ranking jobs at Township of Leeds and Thousand Islands on the line for making sexual harassment allegations

“I have to do what’s right and what’s honourable and do everything I can to try and ensure that I’ve resolved all recourses available which include going public,” explained Jackson during a July interview with CKWS.

An internal investigation by a third-party lawyer, hired by the township found the allegations against Greg Borduas were “unfounded and malicious” in nature.

The plaintiff claims stories that aired about the allegations “falsely and maliciously broadcasted defamatory news videos.”

None of the claims have been proven in court and representatives with Corus Entertainment say the company stands behind its decision to air the stories.

“We believe our reporting of this story was accurate and in the public interest, in keeping with the best journalistic principles and practices of Global News and CKWS,” said Ron Waksman, vice-president, Digital and Editorial Standards and Practices Global News and Corus Radio.

The township councillor also intends to clear his name.

READ MORE: Leeds and Thousand Islands council votes to suspend councillor’s pay following Integrity Commissioner report

“I will be challenging these vexatious charges with as much effort as I fought to see the suppressed evidence,” Jackson wrote in an email to CKWS TV.

Following the internal investigation, and integrity commissioner suggested Jackson’s pay be suspended for three months for violating the code of conduct by publicly disclosing confidential human resources information.

Borduas is seeking $1 million in damages to his “integrity, character and damage to his professional reputation.”

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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