Western faculty union calls for chancellor's resignation
LONDON, ONT. -- The union representing faculty members at Western University says Chancellor Linda Hasenfratz’s apology for travelling outside of Canada in December is ‘not good enough.’
The University of Western Ontario Faculty Association (UWOFA) is instead calling for her resignation.
“This decision sends a terrible message to our students and will undermine Western’s reputation and credibility in the community,” said UWOFA President Beth MacDougall-Shackleton in a statement.
Western University administration says Hasenfratz will not be asked to relinquish her role as the school’s chancellor.
Instead the Board of Governors opted to censure her, saying in a statement released Sunday, "Her actions did not demonstrate the respect for others and the integrity we expect from members of the Western community, especially our leaders."
But, Board Chair Rick Konrad added in another statement Monday that while they realize there are passionate views on either side, the decision was weighed very carefully.
"...we feel Linda has a long track record of deep engagement with our students - coaching and mentoring them, and being a strong advocate for the role universities and our students play in today's world. Linda understands she has lost some trust in our community. Accepting the board's censure is a signal of her strong commitment to making this right."
Hasenfratz resigned from her position on Ontario’s COVID-19 vaccine task force on Jan. 20.
She also released a statement Sunday saying she has found great joy in supporting the university, and is disappointed in herself for not setting a better example when she travelled abroad.
"I breached the community's trust and apologize without reservation for the mistake I have made. I am heartbroken for letting everyone down and am grateful for the opportunity to continue to serve as Western's Chancellor."
Hasenfratz added that she is committed to "earning back the trust and respect of the Western community."