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Author Topic: Steve Maclean Trial Board Transcript  (Read 909 times)

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Steve Maclean Trial Board Transcript
« on: March 16, 2021, 01:18:59 AM »
6751 Trial Board Stephen MacLean – Aug 18, 2020

James Dodman: I’ll ask everybody to state their name.  Starting with myself; I’m James Dodman, President Local 773.
Speaker 1: Barry Heeney, Recording Secretary Local 773.
Speaker 2: Matt Bradfield Executive Board, Local 773.
Speaker 3: Dave Mifflin Executive Board 773.
Speaker 4: Shawn Abela Vice-President Local 773.
Speaker 5: Brian Fields Executive Board 773.
Speaker 6: Davide Colasanti Executive Board for Local 773.
Mr. MacLean: Steve MacLean, the accused.
Perry Speranza: Perry Speranza, Local 353, and I’ll be acting as counsel for Brother MacLean.
Karl Lovett: Karl Lovett, Business Manager local 773.
James Dodman: Okay, so I’m going to ask for the charges so I can read them out.  Do we have a copy of the charges Barry
Barry Heeney: Yes.
James Dodman: So, the charges state, I, Karl Lovett, card number B964903, a member of local union number 773 IBEW hereby prefer charges against brother Stephen MacLean, card number D964861, a member of local union 773 IBEW. His last known mailing address is 2836 Vaughn Ave., Windsor, Ontario.  The violations are as follows: Article 25, Section 1(a); Article 25, Section 1(e); Article 25, Section 1(g); Article 25, Section 1(j).  The violations occurred on or about May 20th, 2020.  The violations occurred as follows: the charged member knowingly and willfully shared the business of the local union with people other than members of local 773.  The charge member operated a Facebook page as the creator, director, author and administrator that allowed for disparaging comments, falsification of facts and the sharing of members’ personal and
Time- 2:40
private information when cautioned by - not to by the business manager. You’ve heard the charges, how do you plead?
Mr. MacLean: Not guilty.
Perry Speranza: Can we just decide on some of the preliminary issues Mr. Chairman? For instance, I understand that it’s precedent, I’m not sure about how you do it in your local, but in some locals, I’ve been told that the counsel – when a charged party has a counsel, is either the counsel or the accused can speak, is that an issue here?
James Dodman: Yeah, that’s the way – so, you have to pick which one does the speaking.  So, if you want – if you’re the council and Steve want to speak, he’ll be called as a witness.
Perry Speranza: What we’ve decided is that as counsel, I would be doing the speaking.
James Dodman: Okay.
Perry Speranza: Okay, and while I’m at it, I’d like to inquire, generally when a trial board is had, trial transcripts are produced.  Will that be happening here?
James Dodman: Yeah, we have a …
Barry Heeney: It’s being recorded.
James Dodman: … Barry is taking notes and it’s being recorded.
Perry Speranza: Okay, so according to the policies here at 773, will the local pay for the production of those transcripts or …?
James Dodman: Like if you’re required to have them issued to you?
Perry Speranza: If he desires to appeal and he requests for transcripts to be produced, who will pay for the cost of the production?
Time- 4:38
James Dodman: I’m assuming that the hall will pay for that depending upon the situation.
Perry Speranza: Okay, so the reason why I’m asking is, for instance in local 353, it’s always been that the hall has paid, so, but I always like to get it understood, so it’s on the record.
James Dodman: Yeah, it’s never been an issue in the past.
Perry Speranza: Also, the one thing I’d like to ask about is and this isn’t an issue that’s defined in (05:21) hearing manual, but I believe even in the Constitution it states that the trial board shall deliberate immediately after the trial and make a decision and then deliver it to the charge party?
James Dodman: Yes.
Perry Speranza: So, will that be the procedure?
James Dodman: Technically yeah, that will be the same.
Perry Speranza: Just to get it straight because it’s my understanding that the decision is to be delivered immediately.
James Dodman: Normally, we do it by mail, so it’s not – I mean a couple days before you’re going to receive it.
Perry Speranza: I just wanted to get it on the record because of things I’ve seen happening in other locals related to deliverance of decisions.  Okay, so those are the issues I wanted to address prior to the - commencing the trial.
James Dodman: Okay.  So, again, if Steve wants to speak, he’s going to be a witness and he’s going to have to leave the room while Karl presents his case.
Perry Speranza: What we decided is I’m going to be speaking and if Brother MacLean needs to make a point or an issue, he’s going to communicate it to me.
Time- 6:54
James Dodman: That’s fine.  Okay.  So, at this time I’ll ask the charging party, Karl, to present his evidence and any witnesses he has.
Perry Speranza: Sure.
Speaker 1: On that, in the Constitution, it says 30 days, so we’re definitely – whatever it is, within 30 days for a response.
Perry Speranza: Do you want us to produce a card?
Karl Lovett: Can I get just a quick 10-minute time out here? 
Perry Speranza:Do you need us to produce paid dues receipts or anything like that?
James Dodman: Like I know the room has it.  You’re the only one that I would question.  I’m assuming you have paid up dues receipt?
Perry Speranza: We’re not gonna – that’s the other thing I wanted to ask about, but since it doesn’t seem to be an issue, we’re not going to be wearing masks.
James Dodman: No, we’ve kind of set the room up so we’re spread out far enough, we shouldn’t need a mask.  You can wear one if you want.
Perry Speranza: I wanted to make sure.
Speaker 1: (08:42)
James Dodman: Yeah, go ahead Karl.
Karl Lovett: Okay, before I start, I’m just wondering if the representative could show his paid-up dues receipt.
James Dodman: He just did.
Speaker: Yeah, he just did.

Charging party testimony

Karl Lovett: Thank you.  So, where we start from here is on or about, I believe it was September of last year, a Facebook page was created.  That page went on for some time.  Multiple
Time- 9:05
comments were introduced on that page.  Steve MacLean is the administrator, the creator, not the only author, but one of the authors (09:18).  So, being an administrator of a Facebook page per se, you have the ability to moderate any conversation that happens on that page.  You can put certain items in there and it will stop certain words will get put on.  So, if somebody puts a disparaging comment with an asshole or some other word, it won’t be posted on that page.  You have the ability to do that as an administrator.  In doing that, you can also have the page set up so that any comment that goes to that page goes to you first for moderation and then if you see it fit, you can put it on there.  That being said, during the election campaign or any other time, you have freedom of speech to say whatever you want.  But in that freedom of speech, you can’t have defamatory comments, disparaging comments or fraudulent comments because your liable both internally through the IBEW and criminal. This page was created last year, it went on for some time.  In that, Steve MacLean comments a few times, “I have to change my cover photo due to copyright issues”.  Steve MacLean had a picture of the IBEW sign from the union hall here, a sign that we can’t find that was in the union hall here, but we don’t know where it went.  Maybe at the end of this trial, Mr. MacLean can tell us where that sign is at, because we couldn’t find it. 
There are numerous comments on there (10:52), Steve MacLean says, “Can’t use the bug or acronym IBEW, oops”.  In doing that, once again, talking about the IBEW.  (11:03) replies “No worries Steve, the picture doesn’t change the narrative”. Steve MacLean at another time visited the post office box during the campaign, took a picture of the box to share with the public, the public, on a Facebook site.  And then Steve
Time- 11:23
MacLean says, “So, the deal is you can’t actually put your ballot in the box, although I did have a conversation with the employee and they will either show up through the mail or people could drop them off to him, and he’ll put them in the box”. Once again, IBEW information is not supposed to be shared with the public on the internet. Steve MacLean comments on there, “I have a picture of the not at work list from this morning.  Any member who can’t easily get there to the hall, just ask me and I’ll message you”. 
My next piece of evidence will be the IBEW 773 website where Steve MacLean set up his own account.  It’s his card number, I checked that, D964861, first name Stephen.  I don’t know if he knows, but he spelt his last name wrong.  He spelled his last name MscLean, but our system shows how many times he actively went in there and searched throughout that system.  We can compare that with some of the notes that Steve took. 
We had a letter that’s posted to that website.  I won’t read the entirety of the letter to you right now, but it’s a letter from our legal counsel. It says, “You have indicated Local 773 maintains a not at work list, which the list indicates those members that are available for work.  A member’s name will be taken off the list when he or she is provided with work or in the event the member asked for his name to be removed from the list due to unavailability for any reason including personal reasons. This list is only available on three monitors within Local 773 office and such accessible to members only.  Specifically, this out of work list is not currently shared publicly in any manner.  I confirm that you also advised that Local 773 maintains the website.  Information is posted on the website regarding jobs that come into the Local.  The initiative was undertaken in an effort to promote transparency and to keep the members
Time- 13:24
apprised of worker coming to the local.  There has now been some discussion about posting the out of work lists of Local 773 website as well as including that on the lists of information regarding work assignments.  This additional information would not only identify the name of the member or members on the out of work list, but would also include information regarding members that have been assigned work, the location of work and by reference to your principle agreement, the applicable wage rate.  We have (13:50) our opinion with respect to sharing this personal information regarding your members on Local 773 website.  At the outset, we confirm that we do not have copies of the union by-laws and/or constitution, therefore, subject to any restrictions, provisions in those documents, we would advise that it is our opinion that there is a legal requirement for the Local – there is no legal requirement for the Local to post the out of work list on this website.  The question that becomes whether Local 773 should share this type of personal information, i.e. member name, assignment of work or wages. 
It is our opinion that posting specific information regarding the name of a member as well as information regarding a specific members assignment including the physical location of the job without the member’s consent could result in complaint regarding breach of privacy.  As well, by virtue of the fact, that the out of work list indicates, without explanation, that a member’s name has been removed and is no longer being available for work. This could inadvertently pose privacy concerns as to why a member’s name has been removed from the list, for example, removed for personal reasons such as illness.  In essence, the Local would be tracking the member’s activity and sharing it publicly with the entire membership as
Time- 14:55
well as anyone else that gains access to that site.  Further access to this type of information could raise legitimate concerns about your member’s safety and security i.e. potential for crime.  In fact, we have indicated that quite some time ago this type of information was shared, and a member raised concerns that it could potentially lead to a theft or break in at his home.  As you are no doubt aware, there is nothing the Local can do to protect information posted on the internet from being hacked or shared inappropriately either privately or in a more public forum.  Therefore, sharing information that a particular member is, for example, on assignment out of town for an extended period of time could lead to member complaints or potential legal action by a member who has suffered property damage, theft as direct result of his or her whereabouts becoming known by the local website.  It is therefore our opinion that Local 773 can legally refrain from publishing the out of work list with personal information regarding your member’s names and work assignments on the website without the consent of the membership.  If Local 773 believes there’s some value in having this information shared with the membership and wishes to do so publicly on the website, we recommend that the Local seek consent from the total membership before proceeding to do so”, signed Susan M. Porter, Kavanaugh, Milloy Law Firm. 
I’ll move to my next point.  Stephen MacLean in his own words suggests, “just so you heard, we dispatched four on Monday for (16:14) Sullivan, (16:16) number 3, Steiner number 5, Brazzeau number 11 and Zdunic number 74”.  On this website what it led to was a bunch of people ridiculing number 74 who took the call.  Steve MacLean condoned this, didn’t stop it, didn’t remove it and allowed it to happen for some time. I got a call
Time- 16:41
from said member Zdunic asking why his name was on the internet.  I told him I didn’t put his name on the internet.  He said it’s on Steve MacLean’s site right now Karl, go have a look.  Everybody’s bashing me.  This is exactly why our lawyer gave us a legal opinion not to post member’s information on the internet for this very reason. So, this was posted – this was posted on our website.  Steve MacLean saw it, talked about it, knows about it.
Steve MacLean just posted last week, August 13th, let me see here. “Got this in the mail last week, don’t even know what to say about it.  I guess it’s illegal to run for business manager at 773. If it’s a case of having open discussions about issues on a site that is only IBEW during election is found to be unconstitutional, we have a lot of problems that aren’t yet addressed”.  Only IBEW during election, these are Steve MacLean’s words, and I’d like to find out did he share my name in and he shared Barry Heeney’s name in, recording secretary, and assistant (17:54) at the Local.  And in doing so, Steve MacLean shared our card numbers with the general public.  You’ll get copies of those.  As well as our signature to prove that’s Karl and that’s Barry. This is all coming from a person who wanted to be as he quoted, “the top person in the IBEW”. 
Steve MacLean then reports on there, “According to the IO rep, this is the first time he’s heard of this happening”, referring to a letter getting mailed out by a contractor.  “He’s told me there’s no rule against it, so I said, well that means anybody could write a letter running any member down and just not sign it.  He agreed that we’ll probably have to make some by-law changes for the next election. The rule now states that the (18:44) of the mailer cannot be scrutinized by any member, however, if slanderous or liable comments are made,
Time- 18:50
that member could be subject to charges.  The judge is only responsible to make sure the IBEW acronym and IBEW bar are not used in anybody’s correspondence. Steve MacLean’s words, I add.  “The rules now state the content in the mailer cannot be scrutinized by any member, however, any slanderous or libelous comments that are made by a member could be subject to charges”.  This is his words, not mine.  Steve MacLean sent him a letter, Steve MacLean for business manager Local Union 773.  “When we have issues on jobs, RBA, I’m not a plumber or a rep, I’m the business manager, has repeatedly sided with the contractor and ignored our cries even when the principle agreement is very clear”.  I’d like him to produce evidence when I’ve sided with the contractors.  “I firmly believe that a person who fights for our wages should never say we’re overpaid”.  I’d like Steve MacLean today to produce the evidence that I said any electrician in this union is overpaid. “If this is what you believe, I don’t want him representing me during bargaining”. For starters, we had to change our dispatch system so it’s fair and transparent, therefore indicating that I’m running a system that’s fraudulent and unfair.
Steve MacLean on his website allowed for another post.  “Steve MacLean for BM, LU 773”.  This letter – author is Chris Brigley.  “This is a question for the incumbent, “I was curious to whether or not there were any new apprentices brought in this year. The fact that they could play hockey or baseball and don’t know a Phillips screwdriver from a Robertson may get us a few cheap trophies for the wall, but it’s not going to make us successful in competing against the non-union sector.  There’s a rumour flying around that there were some apprentices brought in and one of them was a son of one of your strong
Time- 20:56
supporters who has made it a point to endorse you for your position”.  It was shared with the general public.  “To all members and for some strange reason, Facebook has another glitch, can someone please forward this to the Business Manager”. So, to show you it wasn’t sent to me, this was sent to the general public on the internet. 
This here is from Chris (21:21), “Steve MacLean for business manager, Local Union 773”.  “I have a question for Ted (21:26), Karl’s election judge, Brother (21:28), can you kindly provide the name of the business managers in question, they each provided for the debate.  I’m obviously suspicious the legitimacy of most of the election for good reason.  I feel Karl may have wrote the questions himself.  I’d like to confirm with these business managers that they actually forwarded anything regarding the election.  This shouldn’t be a difficult task with no excuses unless Karl chose the questions and gave them to you for a manipulated debate.  If these questions were actually provided by the other business managers, you should have read their names and then posed their questions as a normal debate and procedure would take place”. 
Here’s the next one from Steve MacLean, the author, and he calls himself the administrator. He says, “So, I guess the call came in last week for Walmart.  One of our members who was at number 12 was in the shower.  When he got out of the shower, he called the hall.  The call was already filled, and they gave him an R1 for missing the phone call”.  Believe that. And in that, we’ll produce some audio evidence here just to show you how he posted fraudulent information about the business manager, the assistant business manager, the dispatch system and how he lied to every one of the members for his own
Time- 22:53
benefit in trying to win a campaign.  This is number 12 on the list he’s referring to.
“Hey, how are you doing?”
“Yeah, so what I wanted to call you for is it was reported on the internet that on Facebook, that we contacted you last week and you returned a call to us ten minutes after and you got a refusal, what are you shocked about here?”
“They didn’t call back”. 
“Oh, because it was reported on the internet you called back after you got out of the shower and you said a refusal.  The way we got your refusal down here is if they don’t call back to the union hall the day that they were notified of a job, so you have five refusals, and on your sixth refusal, you go to the bottom of the list.  So, technically you have five refusals right now, but anybody on the top ten on that work list, has to notify the union hall of their availability daily, unless we get a hold of you”. 
“Oh, okay.  So, did you want me to call every morning or?” 
“Well, if you call us some point in time during the day just to see if there is any calls in the hall, preferably at 3:00 in the afternoon, 3:00 in the afternoon and we can tell you there’s a call here, do you want it, you see what I’m saying?”
“Because I don’t like to miss anybody on the list, but I also don’t like to call 30 people for a one-man call.  So, the guys in the top ten, it’s their responsibility to get a hold of us.  It’s
Time- 24:25
not the rule I implemented. That rule has been here since I started in the Local long before I got here.”
“Yeah, no I understand”.
“All right, buddy”.
“I never called the hall back”. 
“Yeah, I was going to say, because I went through my phone, Barry’s phone and we have electronic digital recording here that shows if the outgoing call, so I didn’t see your number anywhere on the message, so I just wanted to make sure I didn’t miss you”.
“Yeah, no, I got that call, but I was out cutting the grass and I figured it too late, so I didn’t call back”.
“No problem buddy, you have a good night”. 
“Okay, bye”.
I’ll make that Exhibit 1 that will be added to – and if you heard clearly …
Perry Speranza: Brother Chair, if Brother Lovett is going to submit exhibits, are we going to get …
Karl Lovett: You are going to get a copy.
Perry Speranza: … supply his copy?
Karl Lovett: It’s going to go to the international.  It’s going to be transcribed here, a copy of that will also go back to …
Perry Speranza: What if mean is – so, we can address the issues in the trial if we’re going to get copies of what you’re testifying about?
James Dodman:One hundred percent, because everything is getting transcribed, right. 
Time- 25:34
Perry Speranza: No, what I’m saying is right now.  So, because we’re going to have to defend ourselves.
James Dodman: Sure, yeah.
Perry Speranza: Can we going to get copies?
James Dodman: Of the audio?
Perry Speranza: No, no, of the exhibits you’re talking about.
James Dodman: Well, the exhibit was the audio.
Perry Speranza: Yeah, but I mean all the rest of the …
James Dodman: Sure.
Perry Speranza: ?… issues.
James Dodman: I meant to add them on earlier actually. 
Karl Lovett:So, I’d just like to point back to that conversation, and I’ll start with the post from Steve MacLean.
Perry Speranza: Can you tell us what page you’re on there?
James Dodman: I don’t have a copy of the reply.
Karl Lovett:It’s this page right here.  I’d say it’s about half-way through.
Perry Speranza: What’s it say? (26:51).
Karl Lovett: Keep going. So, just to point back to that though and I’ll read it again so everybody can hear.  “So, I guess a call came last week for Vollmer, one of our members who was at number 12 was in the shower”.  I believe he was actually at number 10 when we checked out a work list today.  “When he got out of the shower, he called the hall, the call was already filled, and they gave him an R1 for missing the phone call”.  Flat out lie. No evidence to back it. But I have the evidence, I just played it for you.  The member said he never called the hall.  He wasn’t in the shower, he was cutting the grass, didn’t think he had to call
Time- 27:27
back to the hall. Pretty clear.  Once again, an attempt to ruin my character. Oh, and if you flip to the next page, you’ll see (27:41) right there with his R1, phone number beside it. 
Now turn to the next page, so Steve MacLean, “Well I’ve been told we’re having another election for business manager, only because of the negative letters sent out about me.  I’d rather see a completely new election since Barry’s letter also is unreadily towards key board members and the positions at the head table. The only way to win this one is to get the b-card votes out, however, neither the hall or the IO would give their names and addresses. Huh? Also, fishy that (28:32) was notified about his – about this new election from IO a week before I found out – found out and it was me that submitted the protest to the election”. I’m going to point to Steve MacLean. How many times did you call down to the union hall to myself or Barry and ask to have a look at the out of work list to check out the b-card members? Another flat out lie. He never came in and I know that because in my debate with Steve, I asked him how many b-card members there were. He thought there were 150, 180.  We’ve got 32.  You just would have had to look at the list down here and you would’ve seen that. 
So, here’s another lie that was posted to the general public on the internet.  “The only way to get – the only way to win this one is to get the b-card votes, however, neither the hall or IO will give me their names and addresses”.  I was never asked for them.  Although, we can’t provide addresses, he can do a mail out, but he can come down and review the list as per the election guide book. “I’m available for any member either here or on Facebook or by phone or in person.  We need to stop this travesty they call dispatch here in Windsor”. He shared it with
Time- 29:58
the general public. He’s available on Facebook, social media device and anybody can see if you want to derate the IBEW.
Steve MacLean posts from a friend, “Good read, this puts into perspective the uphill battle we have ahead of us”. Flip that page, the author of the letter, Chris (30:31) posted to the general public. “I’d like to inform the members of 773 of some of my knowledge and experiences with our Local, it’s business managers, the IBEW international office, and our out of work list. Years ago, I charged Sol (30:56), our previous business manager with the same charges for the same reason as I’m charging Karl Lovett.  At that time, as well as now, I knew my charges to be legitimate and constitutionally obligated.  I was eventually informed by IO representatives that, though he knew my charges to be factual, that I was only when making the complaint. So, nothing happened. Other issues and dealings with the international office led me to the realization that they, at almost all costs, will defend the business manager or work a deal out without responding back to me.  My main point in the case was that the IO took about a year to remove Sal (31:35) from IBEW.  This was done the exact date the Windsor police charged him for fraud.  The evidence was overwhelming, yet IO waited until they were forced to do something about Sol (31:43) before any action.  My long-winded point to all this is that I’m well aware of the international office of the IBEW will not pursue any charges against Karl Lovett, not because it’s just me charging him, not because it’s prior to elections, but in my experience the IO defends business managers who may vote for them, just saying. I mention in my charge, the dispatch system in Windsor is not nearly comparable to other IBEW Union halls in Ontario or across Canada, even with the recent pathetic changes that
Time- 32:13
were likely negotiated with the BA and IO.  The fact that these two little – these too little too late changes were even made shows an admission of guilt to the fact that our dispatch system is a disgrace to our membership, is over – and disgraced our – and our membership has overwhelmingly felt fed up.  We’re a laughingstock to other halls because of our easily manipulated, non-transparent list.  I’ve been fighting for this for years now and everyone is tired of how the 773 business manager has manipulated the list to their advantage for all these years.  If the business manager is able to surpass the membership to the extent that we are too afraid to pose questions at the union meetings, at work or directly to him, then it’s not a fair brotherhood type system.  If any member feels intimidated by the BA at all, he has too much control over everything at 773 and that is not real democracy or a union environment.  Are the apprentices located entirely on one side of the union hall in order to manipulate their vote? Of course.  Do the members of 773 even trust voting system after two major issues in the last election? And likely too many members have left our hall because of our out of work list and how it’s crippled them financially.  It causes stress on families and relationships and adds financial harm.  At no other IBEW hall in Ontario, do business managers have such ultimate control and ability to ruin member’s lives.  The expression, absolute control, corrupts absolute is real. Total control of the list with no accountability gives total control of the hall in every aspect.  No one should be intimidated and if you are, then things need to change. The business manager works for us legally, but you’d never know it. Members also have noticed Karl’s attitude and arrogance being reminiscent of Sol (34:02) recently.  Now, it seems every job is Lari, even when it appears it shouldn’t
Time- 34:09
be.  This is also at the total control of the business manager and I question if preferential treatment goes to certain generous companies like Mid South”.  Well, this letter here is a laughingstock, because anybody knows, primarily I think everybody in this room was on the stab.  I don’t run the stat plan, I have nothing to do with the stab plan, they run it.  No way for me to manipulate the list because I don’t run the list, the assistant business manager does and the dispatcher.  Everything is done fair and honestly, and I put it to Steve MacLean to prove it’s not.  I’d like him to prove the time when it was manipulated to take advantage of somebody else.  I’d like him to prove that time when a E-board member got special treatment, like, some of the e-board members in front of us right now, they’re working residential for $25 an hour. Another e-board member sitting in front of us that’s been out of work for a year. I’d like to see the preferential treatment.  But that’s not the real problem, the real problem is Steve MacLean let the author of this letter post it on his site to the general public to humiliate the IBEW and especially when he referred to as the top dog of the IBEW, the business manger.  To bring harm against me and my family, my career and my job and in doing so, shaming the IBEW.  My last piece of evidence will come right now.
Speaker: Can I ask you a question?
Karl Lovett: These are the words of Steve MacLean. 
“If you have a member or an employee who is the victim of repeated workplace harassment, how would you handle the situation?
“Members who are continuously harassed at work, generally in situations like that, as we know, there’s a zero-tolerance policy
Time- 36:30
with the Ministry of Labour, as well as in the IBEW.  Any time the work harassment is used, to me as a foreman on a job or any type of supervisor position, those, those people involved are going to be obviously counseled and at that point, we’re going to assess what the harassment was, do an investigation and most likely if harassment has taken place, both members generally will be removed from the job site.  Personal harassment is a detriment and obviously not going to be accepted on most job sites.  As we are a brotherhood and with the constitution and collective agreement that we work out of, there’s lots of rules in there to prevent this from happening and ways for guys to ensure their safety on the job site”.
“So, in rebuttal to that, you’re in agreement that no form of harassment should be tolerated either at work, in the office, on-line, social media?”
“Absolutely, I would totally agree with that statement.  Any harassment that takes place needs to be dealt with firmly and fairly in a quick manner.  As we have seen through this election campaign, there’s been a lot of stuff being thrown around on the internet.  And most of it, people have good intentions, but don’t always speak the way they should, appropriately, and you can just see the frustration with a lot of the membership right now”. 
Karl Lovett: That concludes my testimony. 
James Dodman: ?You don’t have any witnesses?
Karl Lovett:No.
James Dodman: Okay, so we’ll go to the accused.  You may now show your evidence, rebut the testimony and/or call a witness.
Time- 38:39

Clarifying questions to Charging Party

Perry Speranza: Thanks Mr. Chair. May I ask some clarifying questions from the charging party…
James Dodman: Sure.
Perry Speranza: …related to these charges.
James Dodman: Sure.
Perry Speranza: Thank you.  Brother Lovett, I just want to address the parts of the constitution that you’ve charged Brother MacLean under and to better understand why you are choosing those particular clauses to file the charge related to a lot of what you said.  I think a) it is pretty self explanatory.  Article 25, section 1: any member may be penalized for committing any one or more of the following offences.  So, Section 1(a) is violation of any provision of this constitution and the rules herein, or the by-laws, working agreements, or rules of the LU.  So, like I said, that’s pretty well self explanatory and it just basically defines that any member can be charged with a violation of any of the rules herein. 
So, now I’m going to read out the E because you’ve charged Article 25, Section 1(e): engaging in any act or acts that are contrary to the members responsibility towards the IBEW or if any of it’s LUs as an institution or which interfere with the performance by the IBEW or the LU with it’s legal or contractual obligations. Brother Lovett, can you tell us how what you read out actually violates this clause?
Karl Lovett: Quite clearly, any act or acts that are contrary to member’s responsibility toward the IBEW.  One of those responsibilities is not to talk down the organization to which he works for.  One of his responsibilities is to control and moderate if he has a website that other people can’t put disparaging comments
Time- 40:50
about the IBEW or the way in which the IBEW operates. The contractual obligation – I’ve got an obligation to my contractors and my members to run a fair and transparent system and what Steve MacLean allowed to be posted on the site looks like I’m favouring one contractor over another.  As written in that letter, it says, “Mid South may be getting generous”.  It says, “This is also the total control of the Business Manager and I question, if preferential treatment goes to certain generous companies, like Mid south, if another one of my contractors would have seen that they might think I’m in collusion with the contractor”.
Perry Speranza: Thank you Brother Lovett.  What you voiced is opinions about what somebody might think or what you believe is an interpretation.  What I’d like to get from you is, specifically, what about Brother MacLean’s actions violated E.  I mean …
Karl Lovett: Quite clearly …
Perry Speranza: … did he interfere with the performance of the IBEW, can you specifically say how he did that or the LU, other than your opinions about what may have been.
Karl Lovett: No, they’re not my opinions.  I went through emotional trauma all year, emotional trauma all year. When I got these screen shots of all the stuff that was happening, I went through tremendous emotional trauma to the point I was going to seek medical attention.  That’s the interference he had.
Perry Speranza: But specifically, to (c)?
Karl Lovett: (c), you said (e)?
Perry Speranza: Pardon me, I’m sorry.  My eyes are a little blurry today. Engaging in any act or acts that are contrary to the member’s
Time- 42:47
responsibility toward the IBEW or it’s LUs, as an institution or which interfere with the performance of the IBEW or LU.
Karl Lovett: I think at the end of the day Perry, that’s going to be left up to the trial board to determine whether or not I pick those points.
Perry Speranza: Well, that’s why I’m trying – I’m trying to get …
Karl Lovett: I can’t make that determination
Perry Speranza: … clarification.
Karl Lovett: Yeah, but I can’t make that determination.  I present my evidence, they give the answer, they give the verdict.
Perry Speranza: See, we’re going to be tasked with trying to defend your charges, that’s why I’m getting a specific clarification, so I can defend – we can defend.  You’re accusing of the brother of interfering with a performance by the IBEW or LU with its legal or contractual obligations.  Can you define for us how he did that with a specific issue related to – like you’re speculating about what Mid South might have thought, but you’re not producing any evidence that somehow it caused an issue with Mid South, did it?
Karl Lovett: So, once again what I’m going to tell you is I produced the evidence.  The question you’re asking me is if I can tell you the verdict.  I can’t tell you the verdict and I can’t tell you what these seven people are going to think.  What I can tell you is I produced my evidence and in my personal opinion based on evidence in a written format, right here, Steve MacLean violated clause (e) and it will be up to them to come up with a verdict.
Perry Speranza: Yeah, but see I’m still trying to …
Karl Lovett: Well, I won’t have that answer for you, but the trial board might.
Time- 44:24
Perry Speranza: (44:23) I need – we need to understand specifically, to be able to defend your charges, so what you believe may have happened or unless you produce specific proof that he interfered with the contractual obligations in the – in the LU or the Local, it’s just speculation at this point.
Karl Lovett: Do you know what the LARI agreement is?
Perry Speranza: I believe so.
Karl Lovett: What is it?
Perry Speranza: Can you define it for me?
Karl Lovett: Well, I’ll tell you.  It’s called the Local Area Recovery Initiative. Did you see how many times I was talking it about here, we have a legal contractual obligation with our contractors with that agreement, which I keep in secrecy, so nobody knows about it.
Perry Speranza: But what I’m saying to you, can you define a specific issue that interfered, that action, let’s say I can understand if you’re going to point to a specific failing because of Brother MacLean’s actions, that something that happened related to that, but you haven’t done that.
Karl Lovett: Well.
Perry Speranza: You’ve pointed to something that may have, you speculated about your opinion about how it’s improper.  But what I’m trying to do here is define how it relates to directly.
Karl Lovett: So, if you’re asking me, so, I can tell you how I found out about that.  A contractor called me and the contractor was not Mid South, the contractor was (45:53) Electric, to ask me if I’d seen the stuff that was written and I told him, no, I did not see that stuff.  That’s how it originally came out, because his son and his son-in-law, who were both members here, were observing
Time- 46:03
that website as it was going.  So, so the question that was posed then was, “is anybody getting special treatment dude?” And I said, “nobody gets special treatment. Everybody gets the same treatment”.  I said “you know how its run around here”.  And that was the end of it, but I didn’t think I had to go that far because I produced the evidence here where it’s written.
James Dodman: ?So, I think at this point though, you’re just going to have to prove that one is not, is not a viable charge.
Perry Speranza:I don’t think – when we’re defending ourselves in the trial board, it’s up to the charging party to prove that a clause has been violated.  It’s not up to the defendant to prove he didn’t violate it.  I think that’s the precedence of how it’s done, correct me if I’m wrong.  But when a charging party brings charges and he relates it to a specific clause, it’s his place to define how the Brother has violated that clause.
James Dodman:So, in his – what I’m gathering is, his - the evidence he produced is going to support his charges.  So, it’s going to be up to the trial board to determine whether that evidence supports that charge or not.
Perry Speranza: What I’m saying is he hasn’t produced any evidence.  He’s produced comments.  Members have the right to free speech.  People can comment, especially on election time about issues.
James Dodman: But when you’re sworn into the IBEW, you take an oath, and that oath is your responsibility towards the IBEW.
Perry Speranza: Yes.
James Dodman: So, if you break that oath, break those responsibilities …
Karl Lovett: Point of order. Right now, the debate can’t be between you and the defendant – I produced my evidence.  He can say that he does not think I produced enough evidence to support that,
Time- 48:03
but it ends there. We’re not going to deliberate that right now.  He can say that I don’t have the evidence to back the issue, and I could say that I think my evidence substantiates it, and that’s where it dies.  You can’t beat the dead horse.  Right now, what you’re doing is going on a fishing expedition.
Perry Speranza: No, no.
James Dodman: So, I suggest we move on.
Perry Speranza: Yeah. What I’m saying is you speculating about Mid South or somebody that called you, it doesn’t really prove that he violated his oath and his responsibility towards the IBEW. This is your opinion.  Let me move on and I’ll come back to that. 
Brother Lovett, you charged Brother MacLean under (g), Article 25, Section 1(g); wronging a member of the IBEW by any acts or acts other than the expression of views or opinions causing him physical or economic harm. Can you define for us how Brother MacLean has caused you physical or economic harm, other than the expression of views or opinions?
Karl Lovett: It doesn’t have to be me.  It says, wrongly – a member of the IBEW by any act or acts other than an expression of views or opinions causing him physical or economic harm.  The economic harm he posed was when he allowed, on his page, everybody to run down, Mr. (49:30), Brother (49:31), the member.  Brother (49:33) was going to stay working at FM Silvan, and they wanted me to keep him there.  When this all went down on the internet and Steve allowed it to happen, he said I have to take a lay-off, I can’t handle it anymore.  And that’s in my evidence.
Perry Speranza: With all due respect, Brother, you haven’t brought evidence that Brother quit his job. And usually …
Time- 49:57
Karl Lovett:No, he didn’t quit his job. He took the voluntary layoff, four of them did.
Perry Speranza:Okay.
Karl Lovett:And the reason he took that layoff, if you’d let me finish, is because on Steve MacLean's site, Steve MacLean allowed the guys to say, watch what’s gonna happen. The two main hires are gonna stay and the two guys from the top list are gonna come back to the list. So, the Brother felt so bad about it that, that when they wanted to keep him, he said, just go ahead and lay me off with them. So, and that’s on Steve MacLean's website.
Perry Speranza:Once again Brother, it says here specifically, wronging a member of the IBEW by any acts or acts other than the expression of views or opinions causing him physical or financial or economic harm.
Karl Lovett: That’s right, so…
Perry Speranza: So, he didn’t cause him physical harm.
Karl Lovett: Oh, he did!
Perry Speranza: He did?
Karl Lovett: Oh, yes, he did?
Perry Speranza: But where’s the proof of that?
Karl Lovett: I just told you.
Perry Speranza: But that’s hearsay, that’s why I’m asking you…
Crosstalk- 50:50
Karl Lovett:Hearsay, hearsay is if I told…
Perry Speranza:That’s why we have witnesses (50:52).
Time- 50:53
Karl Lovett: Hearsay is if I told you – he told me, that’d be hearsay. When I seen it with my own eyes, that’s not hearsay.
Perry Speranza: Well, yes, it is.
Karl Lovett: I’m producing the evidence.
Perry Speranza:Oh, hearsay is when you're saying what someone else has said.
Karl Lovett: No, no, I’m not saying what he said. I’m saying what I seen…
Perry Speranza: Whatever.
Karl Lovett:…on his website.
Perry Speranza:Proof means you bring a document or you bring a witness with you, with all due respect Mr. Chairman, to the trial. So, is there another issue that you wanna attribute to article 25, section 19(g)?
Karl Lovett: I believe my evidence is here.
Perry Speranza: So, you don’t wish to further clarify?
Karl Lovett:No.
Perry Speranza:Because I didn’t see any evidence of physical or economic harm in any of these comments because it says very clearly and this, this clause has been hammered out and fought over and there’s many precedence that and they wrote it in specifically with those words. It cannot be misinterpreted in any, any way, other than the expression of views or opinions because anybody can interpret an opinion or views and decide that somehow it caused, well, if you don’t bring proof, like if you were to bring proof, like you caused…
Karl Lovett:The proof is here. So, once again, if you don't think – the reason I charged Steve MacLean today is because he brought about physical harm against me. Physical harm in a mental form for one year of me having listened to fraudulent
Time- 52:26
complaints and fraudulent stories. The physical harm that he put on me was tremendous. It was tremendous.
Perry Speranza:One thing…
Karl Lovett:That’s the charges that are here today. You asked me the question. That’s the charges that are here today. They're right here. They're demonstrated. The amount of comments on his page that he authored and administered, that he allowed people to talk about me, fraudulent comments caused me tremendous physical harm. Something I might not ever be able to recover from.
Perry Speranza:Okay Brother, but you haven't brought any evidence that you suffered physical harm, other than you saying you were. You were saying you were stressed by the comments? Oh…
Karl Lovett:Tremendously.
Perry Speranza:And how did it affect you physically?
Karl Lovett:Oh, mentally, physically, emotionally drained, nerves.
Perry Speranza:And did you bring any documentation?
Karl Lovett:I’m telling you what I did. Not every time you cut your finger you go to the doctor.
Perry Speranza:I understand, but is the trial board, there’s a trial board where you turn…
Karl Lovett:So, I’m producing my evidence from my own mouth that I’m telling these people. I could swear to an affidavit if you’d like. The tremendous physical, emotional stress that’s been put on me over this year. I’m testifying to it so I have to uphold my testimony that I’m not lying and I’m telling you right now, I’m not lying. I still bear the burden of what happened throughout this year. This is my testimony which is my evidence.
Time- 53:52
Perry Speranza:You’ve charged the Brother and his reputation is at stake and we’re sitting here in a formal tribunal and the implications are great on the Brother, otherwise I wouldn’t be asking. I need to ask for evidence. That’s my job as council and as a Brother.
Karl Lovett:And I just produced it.
Perry Speranza:You see, so if that’s your evidence, your opinion and then that’s all you got.
Article 25, Section 1(j). Making known the business of an LU directly or indirectly to my employer, employer supported organization or other union or the representatives of any of the foregoing. Brother Lovett, can you give us an example of how Brother MacLean violated Article 25, Section 1(j)?
Karl Lovett:Once again, it’s comprised within these documents right here. He had a public forum where he allowed people to share the information of the IBEW, false information in some cases, talk about the local recovery initiative in a public forum, sharing our information with people of other local unions who were on his Facebook page and still are today and they're not members of Local 773. They are other unions and some are former members. I’ll give you a former, Dan (55:22), they engaged in long conversations, a former member of the IBEW shared that information with them in a public forum.
Perry Speranza:So, that’s your only issue, that Dan (55:38) was on a Facebook forum?
Karl Lovett:No, there was multiple people on the Facebook forum.
Perry Speranza:Yeah, but how many of them are you identifying as an employer supported organization or other union or the representatives of any of the foregoing? That’s, that’s clearly stated, so is Dan (56:00) part of an employer supported organization or another union or is he a representative of any
Time- 56:10
other employer organization or other union? That’s why I’m asking you specifically because the reason why they wrote this out and made law as this is that to avoid people just getting charged because they got offended by what comments another member makes, especially in an election. Elections are tough. How are people discuss issues related to the union in an election if you don’t talk about union issues?
Karl Lovett:So, once again, I’ll revert to my comment I made earlier when Tucker Electric called me about the comments that were being made on the page. When Tucker Electric got that information, it came to Steve MacLean's page, therefore he was letting known the information of the IBEW to an employer. Tucker Electric, (57:00) Tucker is the employer.
Perry Speranza:So, you believe that…
Karl Lovett:I don’t believe.
Perry Speranza:…an IBEW member is responsible for everything that everyone says or what another member may have shared?
James Dodman:We’re not debating that.
Perry Speranza:Okay. I’m just making the point for the record.
James Dodman:So, at this point, it’s your opportunity to present your defence.
Perry Speranza:We’re gonna do that now Brother.
James Dodman:Okay.
Perry Speranza:Because I’ve gone through these – the clauses and I would request, because we’re coming here without any discoveries, not knowing what kind of evidence was gonna be brought to us, that we’d have a short recess where I can deliberate with the charge party and we can quickly prepare for our defence.
James Dodman:Okay.
Time- 57:48
Perry Speranza:Is that acceptable?
James Dodman:Yeah, we can do that.
Perry Speranza:All right, so…
James Dodman:So, we’ll recess for ten minutes, is that long enough?
Perry Speranza:It’s hard for me to say exactly. We’ll try to be as quick as we can.
James Dodman:Okay.
Perry Speranza:But, you know, we ask for a little latitude on your part.
James Dodman:No problem.
Perry Speranza:So, is there somewhere we can go where we can talk in private?
James Dodman:Yeah, like you can go in the back there and close the door there. ??
Karl Lovett:Why don’t you go to the training side (58:15). 
James Dodman:Yeah, you can go through this door over here.
Speaker:Is that door open over there?
Crosstalk- 58:24


James Dodman:I’ll let you present your case. ?
Perry Speranza:Thank you Brother Chairman and just to let you know, we hurried. There’s a lot of stuff to go through so for the sake of expediency, we decided I’m gonna try to go through it here as I look at the notes I’ve made. So, bear with me if I – if it’s not as smooth as it can be, but I gonna try to address the points I heard for Brother MacLean. So, charging party Mr. Karl Lovett…
Karl Lovett:(59:08) is the tape going?
Time- 59:10
James Dodman:Yeah.
Karl Lovett:Okay.
Perry Speranza:Brother Lovett claims that there’s liability (59:19) on a Facebook group and we understand that there’s a certain responsibility for anybody operating a group which is put in place for discussion and a lot of the issues are controversial and other than abusive language or threats, I don’t believe that, you know, I believe that there’s a responsibility to all the members on the group to address with the mechanisms that Facebook has in place. Our contention is that the IBEW constitution doesn’t contain specific clauses that allow for a Brother to be charged for what is said on Facebook or what someone else says on Facebook. Now, Brother Lovett called attention to use of the bug. That used to be a big no-no in the IBEW and I think – and I myself have been charged in the past, but it isn’t anymore. As you can see by looking at Facebook and seeing the IBEW bug used by many members on IBEW members groups.
Brother Lovett took issue with a picture of a ballot box. I don’t see how that violates – we don’t see how that violates any IBEW clauses. There’s no law against showing pictures of a ballot box or using an IBEW bug or sharing them with members.
Now, he claims that Brother MacLean is searching the system and we’re not sure how that is a violation of any clause of the IBEW constitution. I believe members have a right to do that so it doesn’t attach that to a specific violation of any clause. I think the letter from the legal counsel addresses legal requirements for local liability and it’s defined in the letter. I don’t believe that the recommendation from a lawyer to the Local related to their liabilities can restrict the rights of a member. The members, according to IBEW constitution and I’ll
Time- 1:02:12
quote it for you if I can find it quickly. Article 1 and section 2. “This organization is emerging together of all the electrical workers, in the United States and in Canada, fully recognize the sovereignty of each of our great nations and the advancement of industries compatible with the laws of each country where the object is constitution”. That means, and I take it to mean, that the members rights under the law are sovereign. The IBEW constitution works in conjunction. It does not – it doesn’t overlap. The constitution is compatible with the laws of each country (1:03:14). Let me read this again. “Fully recognizes the sovereignty of each of our great nations and the advancement of industry compatible with the laws of each country and the objects of this constitution. The objects of this constitution are not sovereign over the laws of the land. It’s the laws of the land and a member’s right to freedom of speech is a right that he has as a citizen of Canada.
The next reference to posting by Brother MacLean, we believe that IBEW members have a right to share information and he hasn’t specifically pointed out what was scandalous or libelous, even though the IBEW constitution is quite specific about physical or financial harm other than comments or opinions expressed. That covers all forms of speech and precedents have been set in many other locals in the US, most recently local 68, Denver, Colorado. Officers filed charges against a member for pictures he posted on a Facebook group and found him guilty of the clause that relates to schisms. The Brother appealed to the IVP and had his decision overturned. Basically, relying on the rights that a member as defined by the LMRDA Labour Management Reporting and Disclosures Act. The Members’ Bill of Rights defines the member’s right to freedom of speech and protection from being sued or having any law suit filed by union officers using local union funds. That’s a law that we believe we need in Canada especially
Time- 1:05:54
related to fair elections because in the United States, when a member appeals, he appeals to the Department of Labour. The Department of Labour has specific timelines attached to protests of election. Whereas in Canada, we appeal to the IBEW and there is no specific timelines. We’re not saying that happened in this election because I believe that it was addressed in a timely manner, issues.
We believe opinions are allowed on social media and on the internet and elections are full of controversy and it’s for tough people because it’s easy to get your feelings hurt, not to belittle the fact that it’s not right that – to misinform.
A lot of the hearsay information here related to electricians are overpaid. Opinions about new members, but we believe in the trial board, there should be specific evidence or witnesses brought to substantiate claims. A Brother’s opinions or testimony, when he’s filing charges, is not sufficient to validate harm of any kind and if Brother had stress, it’s understandable, but that’s part of being involved in elections. Comments we dispatch are opinions. A letter by a Brother Inch is an opinion posted by a member. That’s legal. It’s not contrary to any part of the IBEW constitution. That’s the reason why these laws are written down. It isn’t contrary to any part of the bylaws or the working agreement. Those are the three things that a member can be charged with. Violation of the IBEW constitution, bylaws or the working agreement. We don’t believe that Brother violated those.
The audio claiming to validate lies. Sometimes misinterpretations are made and sometimes they're regrettable, but we don’t believe that the IBEW constitution allows for a member to be charged for comments or opinions. Harassment is an issue, in the debate the Brother answered it and in an employment environment, certain supervisory staff
Time- 1:09:34
have the ability to deal with it in certain ways. We’re talking about the IBEW constitution. We’re talking about charging a Brother under the constitution and having implications on his working career and his reputation which is why the IBEW constitution specifically states financial or physical. It’s not an interpretation of what may have caused - and stress is something that it is real and it’s very possible that stress was suffered, but that’s why it’s important to be able to validate that and prove it, otherwise anybody can say, look it, I was totally stressed out by those things that were said. Different people have different levels of resistance to stress and language. I don’t believe Brother Lovett was one of them.
The Brother was asked to define specifics related to the clauses of the constitution and I don’t believe he made credible, relevant comments that justified his using some of these clauses. Engaging in any acts or acts that are contrary to the member’s responsibility towards the IBEW and any of its LUs as an institution or which interferes with the performance of the IBEW or the LU if it’s legal and contractual obligations. Brother didn’t really give evidence that Brother's actions interfered with legal or contractual obligations in the IBEW or the LU in any way. He had some opinions about what some contractors might think.
G, wronging a member of the IBEW by any acts or acts other than the expression of views or opinions causing him physical or economic harm. I think that’s very, very specific. Physical harm generally is viewed as direct physical harm, I’m not denying that somebody can’t suffer stress, but you’d have to show proof otherwise anybody could allege that comments they made caused them harm. You come to a trial board, you’re expected to bring proof. There’s no financial harm been caused. It was a hard-fought election. Brother Lovett won.
Time- 1:13:02
Congratulations. Making known the business of the LU directly or indirectly to any employer or employer supported organizations or other union or the representatives of any of the foregoing.
Brother pointed to one member of this Facebook group which, to my understanding, is specific. It’s a closed group for IBEW members, most of which are local 773 and I believe there’s only a few. Apparently, Brother Lovett claims that – I wrote it down. I believe I did. (1:13:56). Dan (1:14:00) was on the site. I think the IBEW constitution is specific. It talks about making known to business (1:14:11) directly or indirectly to any employer, employer supported organization, or other union or to the representatives of any of the foregoing. Brother Lovett didn’t bring evidence that Brother (1:14:26) or ex Brother (1:14:28) is any of those. So, once again, it’s important that we don’t use this constitution to settle our issues with each other unless it’s a serious matter. I don’t believe these – its been defined that Facebook is the new area of discussion amongst members and it could cause a lot of controversy, let’s call it. But there’s mechanisms in Facebook where harassment or abusive language can be addressed by flagging a comment or post and Facebook would deal with it. There’s a mechanism. You don’t need to go to the IBEW constitution to file charges. I didn’t ask Brother Lovett, I would like to ask now, did you at any time, Brother, attempt to address issues that you had or certain comments that you called libelous or slanderous with - or abusive or as harassment with Facebook? The mechanisms…
Karl Lovett:Yes, so Facebook isn’t the governing body that I work for or deal with and with Facebook, I could flag something, but in Facebook, as you know, they have to be something of a racial slur, a schism. Like you talked about they have to be words
Time- 1:16:16
that deemed in appropriate, comments aren’t. So, I could’ve flagged it to Facebook but I’ve had great experience, I guess, with Facebook and I could tell you that a person’s opinion, if it doesn’t involve swear words, if it’s not, you know, something racially motivated, Facebook doesn’t block them and even if they blocked them, you can’t block what you’ve already seen. So, I would’ve went to Facebook and flagged it or posted it, the person – the people already got to read it. You can’t take it out of their mind. Facebook doesn’t reach back out to the person and say, let me (1:16:56) that portion of your memory. ?
Perry Speranza:So, you didn’t try to address it through mechanisms of Facebook?
Karl Lovett:I didn’t think Facebook would resolve my issue.
Perry Speranza:Do you think it was serious enough to address through Facebook?
Karl Lovett:I thought it was serious enough, that’s why I addressed it through charges. Through our normal procedure. There’s nothing in the IBEW constitution that says that I have to address it with Facebook before I report charges.
Perry Speranza:That’s true Brother, but there also isn’t anything in the constitution issue that allows you to file charges for opinions or comments made and that’s what I’ve challenged you to do, but you haven't done so.
Karl Lovett:Actually, you just asked me the question about Facebook.
Perry Speranza:Yeah, but I’ve asked before, when I ask clarifying questions and you didn’t elude to any, can you remember any?
Karl Lovett:Sorry, can you ask the question?
James Dodman:Well, we’re wandering, we’re wandering off topic here so…
Time- 1:18:58
Karl Lovett:So, what was the question, maybe I can answer the question? The question you just asked.
James Dodman:Are you gonna ask about the charges again because you’ve asked about three times about the charges? You're asking him to explain why he charged him with three charges, three times. He presented…
Perry Speranza:He just asked me to do it again though.
Karl Lovett:No, I didn’t ask. I’m asking you…
Crosstalk- 1:18:25
James Dodman:I’m gonna say we’ve done it three times, those were his opinions, you guys have your opinions.
Perry Speranza:I appreciate it Brother, but because I’m trying to deal with specifically with the constitution and I’m stating it for the record.
Karl Lovett:Okay.
James Dodman:Yeah. That’s fine.
Crosstalk- 1:18:36
Barry Heeney:Hold on a minute. One at a time.
Karl Lovett:If I can hear the charge, I just want to hear the question that you asked again. The one you just asked me right now. If I looked – if I found – if I had something in my evidence to – I didn’t hear, sorry.
Perry Speranza:I believe I was talking about wanting a member of the IBEW any (1:18:54) other than the expression of user opinions caused physical or financial or economic harm. And I asked you to point to something. Specific harm…
Karl Lovett:??I answered this.
Time- 1:19:09
Perry Speranza:…economic or – and then…
Karl Lovett:I answered that.
Perry Speranza:…you mentioned you, physically, you mentioned that you were stressed.
Karl Lovett:The mental stress, it’s unbearable.
Perry Speranza:Yeah, and it was…
Karl Lovett:And so, for economic harm, the election just ended. I can’t tell you about the fallout of the economic harm yet because as you know how things work in the industry, it takes some time before I could visually see the economic harm that could come out of this if (1:19:31) our competition seen what happened on that website. They might think there’s a fracture in our system.
Perry Speranza:So, what you're saying is, you charged the Brother…
Karl Lovett:Oh, no, I’m not saying that.
Perry Speranza:…potential…
Karl Lovett:I’m not speculating. I’m telling you, I have physical harm right now done to me.
Perry Speranza:But you just said you were – you were eluding to economic harm.
Karl Lovett:No, I said I can’t tell the fallout from the future. I didn’t say there was fallout, economic.
Perry Speranza:Economic harm isn’t referencing economic harm to the IBEW. It’s specific to the member so you're the charging party, you have to say, okay, where’s my – what economic harm did it do to you?
Karl Lovett:I don’t have to prove every point in that subtitle you have. I have to prove a point in it. It doesn’t say in the constitution
Time- 1:20:18
that I have to meet the charge, I have to hit everything in that paragraph.
Perry Speranza:I’m just asking…
Karl Lovett:It, it says in there what’s chargeable and I’m telling you, I have physical harm. There might be economic harm to me in the future if I have to take time off because I stress.
Perry Speranza:So, is it fair then to say that you don’t have a specific instance of economic harm that was... ?
Karl Lovett:I didn’t say that I did.
Perry Speranza:What I’m saying is, is it fair because if you can’t point to one and you're speculating…
Karl Lovett:I just answered your question. You can ask it three more times if you want. I just told you, I haven’t suffered any economic harm other than having to run the election twice and having to pay for a mailout twice.
Perry Speranza:That’s – are you saying that you've charged the Brother because you had to run the election twice because I believe that those issues were justified and the IO ordered the running of a new election so you can’t blame that on a Brother, can you?
Karl Lovett:Nobody blamed him Perry. I told you, I don’t have to answer – I don’t have to take every point. ?
Perry Speranza:Okay.
Karl Lovett:You asked a question. Do I get to finish my answer?
Perry Speranza:Please.
Karl Lovett:Okay. I don’t have to meet everything in that paragraph to make it a chargeable offence. I have to meet something in that paragraph, but I’m telling you, I suffered physical harm,
Time- 1:21:44
mentally, emotionally. My wife felt it, my kids felt it and they’ll still probably feel it for some time. So, I didn’t claim that there was a financial burden that happened to me. I’m not claiming that today. I’m saying, physically, I’m still stressed out about it.
Perry Speranza:With respect Brother, I’m not contending that. What I’m saying to you is, for the purposes of a trial board, when you claim something that’s not visible or tangible and we’re needing to rely on simply your testimony and a Brother’s reputation hangs in the balance, we would request that you do it in a tangible way. That’s what trials are about. That’s why you have witnesses, did anybody see you break down and cry or beat your dog, you know.
Karl Lovett:Well, I don’t have a dog.
Perry Speranza:Something that…
Karl Lovett:My dog passed away, but my business…
Perry Speranza:…something (1:22:47).
Karl Lovett:…manager did see me break down and cry.
Perry Speranza:All right, well then you should’ve brought him as a witness.
Karl Lovett:You just asked, we’re still doing the trial. I’m giving you the evidence right now.
Perry Speranza:What I’m saying is that’s not evidence. That’s a simple – look, you’re testifying and you're the charging party saying this is how it is, is not evidence. With all due respect to the trial board, because if that were allowed, anybody could charge you with anything and never bring any proof. Simply saying, look it, it’s my testimony, that’s why you need someone to corroborate. Like if somebody strikes you Brother and that’s chargeable, but you can’t just say, look, I – you could’ve
Time- 1:23:27
bumped into a wall and that’s why you need to corroborate, so you know. I think…
James Dodman:So, I think we all understand the point you're making.
Perry Speranza:Yeah, because it’s an important one.
James Dodman:So, let’s move on.
Perry Speranza:So, I ask that you consider carefully that its been a tough election, a lot of harm could’ve been done to each other, but the best thing to do is to move on, not to find a Brother guilty of something that was done in a dirty game. Elections are a dirty game. We all know that.
Karl Lovett:Well, elections don’t have to be a dirty game.
Perry Speranza:They don’t, but I mean…
Karl Lovett:And what you…
Crosstalk- 1:24:07
Perry Speranza:In regular politics they are and…
Karl Lovett:But you…
Perry Speranza:…and in the IBEW…
James Dodman:Hold on Karl.
Perry Speranza:…I believe they are. Now, is it chargeable in the constitution Can you get an election overturned? Like if you haven't been – lost the election and been stressed out about it, would you be able to file a complaint with IO and say, you know, this is – this is, you know, not a good example, but I’m saying it’s been – I’m stretching.
Barry Heeney:To the Chair, if we could get back on topic.
Karl Lovett:If I could respond to what Mr. or Brother Speranza said. You're right, a member’s reputation is at stake here. It’s me. It’s me.
Time- 1:24:54
Perry Speranza:Oh yeah, anybody who subjects himself to elections is gonna understand that there’s gonna be some tough questions asked and issues and, you know, this is why I keep saying, the IBEW constitution doesn’t allow for comments or opinions. It’s specific and if (1:25:19), you gotta bring proof. Physical harm, you have to give evidence, you gotta bring proof.
So, should we treat each other more respect? Absolutely. I mean I believe in discussion on Facebook. I believe on respectful discussions, but I don’t believe that if a guy goes off the rails, that he should be brought up in front of the trial board because that would kill one of our major, most important rights, our freedom of speech. Does freedom of speech have responsibilities, absolutely. Absolutely. When you gotta cross the fine lines. I don’t believe the Brother crossed those lines. So, thank you very much for listening to us Brothers and hopefully you make a wise decision for the Local and for the IBEW.
James Dodman:You don’t have any witnesses?
Karl Lovett:No. Is there any redirect on the stuff that was brought up?
James Dodman:You can rebut if you’d like Karl.
Karl Lovett:I’m just gonna to say because Perry brought up multiple times about not sharing the business, I guess, with people other than members of the IBEW or contractors, I would just like to let the trial board know and maybe Mr. (1:26:40) because he doesn’t know. Some of the people that made comments on that site were John (1:26:45), who is not a member of the IBEW. He’s a former member of the IBEW, but he was thrown out. Andrew (1:26:50) is a member of local 120. Mike Hope, he’s on that site. He’s the owner of Rorison Electric, it was just determined during the trial or sorry, during the election. John Maisonville is the other one at Rorison Electric. He was also on that page.
Time- 1:27:03
Jeremy (1:27:04). Mr. MacLean, Brother MacLean called him the owner of (1:27:10) Electric. And Dan Genovese is a non-IBEW member who’s the superintendent for (1:27:15) Industrials, it’s a non-IBEW shop. In my evidence, if you can see, there was a comment made by Kevin (1:27:36), Kevin (1:27:38).
Perry Speranza:What page are you on Brother?
Karl Lovett:It’s right here. I’d say it’s about three quarters of the way through. Just before Steve MacLean’s campaign letter. The page before there.
Speaker:That’s the one by Chris Inch?
Karl Lovett:No. Steve MacLean. So, just before this page. Sorry, I didn’t number them.
Perry Speranza:Anyway, go ahead.
Karl Lovett:So, you got this here. You see the comment on the bottom from Ken Rolland (1:28:15). There’s a comment on the bottom, right here, from Ken Rolland to Steve MacLean. Ken Rolland was deemed to be a contractor, non-voting IBEW member, who lists himself as the superintendent of (1:28:30) and therefore wasn’t allowed to vote based on evidence that was produced off the internet, that he’s still employed as a manager/superintendent for (1:28:37) Constructors.
Perry Speranza:What did he say?
Karl Lovett:What did he say? He said, Ken Rolland said to Steve MacLean, “so that’s okay then, hm”. Therefore, he did share the information with somebody who’s listed as an owner/operator/superintendent/manager for (1:28:57).
Perry Speranza:And what’s the comment that he shared?
Time- 1:29:01
Karl Lovett:Steve MacLean to Ken Rolland, “according to the IO rep, this is the first time he’s heard of this happening. He’s told me there is no rule against it, so I said, well, that means anybody could write a letter running any member down and not just sign it. He agreed that we’ll probably have to make a bylaw change for the next election. The rules now state that content of mailer cannot be scrutinized by any member, however, if it’s slanderous or libelous, comments are made, that member could be subject to charges. The judge is only responsible to make sure the IBEW acronym and the IBEW bug are not used on correspondence”. That comment’s made by Steve MacLean. The response comes from contractor. So, all I’m pointing to, I’m not eluding to anything, is that this is a contractor listed as a contractor for voting purposes and Steve MacLean agreed on election day, based on evidence that was produced, that he couldn’t vote because he’s listed as a superintendent/manager at (1:30:05).
Perry Speranza:Are you saying that that letter, that was the issue of the election being….
Karl Lovett:No.
Perry Speranza:…redone, was a private thing?
Karl Lovett:No.
Perry Speranza:So.
Karl Lovett:This is sharing information with an owner/contractor.
Perry Speranza:No. That’s what I said. Are you saying that that letter was private, that no one else knew about it even though it was circulated throughout the local? So, Brother MacLean commenting on that letter is a violation of the IBEW constitution?
Karl Lovett:No.
Time- 1:30:35
Perry Speranza:This is what…
Karl Lovett:Brother MacLean was repeating information that was given to him firsthand by the international office.
Perry Speranza:?So what?
Karl Lovett:Nothing to do with…
Perry Speranza:There’s no law against that.
Karl Lovett:Sharing information of the IBEW to somebody who’s an owner.
Perry Speranza:I believe…
Karl Lovett:It’s in the constitution, you have that in front of you.
Perry Speranza:See, this is where we can get in trouble by loosely interpreting what the constitution – I mean I think that was put in place to protect the confidential sensitive information. Like if a Brother is involved in an organizing campaign and you intentionally let somebody who’s involved know information and you can you prove it, then that would be something that you could file a charge. Simply talking about an issue in an election is not something that you should charge a Brother with in related to an election.
Karl Lovett:But on that, the IBEW doesn’t leave it up to your interpretation. They wrote the constitution.
Perry Speranza:Oh, I think it does and…
Karl Lovett:Well, that’s…
Perry Speranza:…that’s where, you know, where the wisdom of the trial board will come into play and if it needed to be appealed, then the wisdom of officers above. So, all I’m pointing out is that you need to be specific and you need to be cognizant of the implications of trying to interpret the IBEW constitution in ways that it wasn’t meant to be. I mean there’s no law against
Time- 1:32:12
talking about issues and it just simply relating it to somebody on Facebook and social media because they're a contractor in your local, I mean that’s the same thing as talking about name hires, making known of information that’s the member’s. It couldn’t be secret if members know about it, so members know about it, they write about it and you're gonna charge them for sharing information. Contractors have information about who gets name hire more than the members do. (1:32:49) follows in this type of activity. I mean, yeah, there’s a lot of things we need to fix with how we behave on Facebook, but finding ways to charge people for things that really are not damaging to the IBEW, not interfering with its contractual abilities and it’s not financial harm to a member, economic harm or physical harm. We’re reaching and that is, in my opinion, our opinion, more damaging potentially to the IBEWs credibility in this information age because the information age is not gonna go away. It potentially has worse implications for us as organizations to be criticized for misinterpreting our laws to punish each other.
James Dodman:I was gonna give you a chance to rebut…
Karl Lovett:(1:34:00).
James Dodman:…anyone else? I’m gonna ask both parties if they feel they had full opportunity to present their case?
Karl Lovett:Yes, I do.
Perry Speranza:Yes Brother, I believe we have. Thank you.
James Dodman:Okay, I’m gonna release both parties to a different room. I’d ask you to stick around just for a few minutes in case we have some questions to ask and we’ll maybe call you back in just for a few seconds.
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