1) PMJT’s Chief of Staff Katie Telford ( @telfordk) is testifying before the HoC Standing Committee on National Defence re what she knew about the #Vance sexual misconduct allegations in 2018. Minister of Defence’s office contacted PMO to say there were ... #cdnpoli #MeToo
2) personal misconduct allegations against CDS Vance. Elder Marques at PMO told Telford about this but they did not know the substance or details of the allegations. They sought advice from the PCO Clerk on how to proceed. They were told it needed to be investigated without ...
3) political interference. Minister of Defence was told to tell the Ombudsman to reach out to PCO. PCO tried to get more information about the allegations but the Ombudsman did not respond to their requests. This is in line with previous testimony of the Clerk & Marques.
4) Telford: she was concerned that PCO was not able to get more information. She asked them whether there was a safety issue for the complainant. She was told there were no safety concerns. It wasn’t until this year that she found out the complaint was about sexual misconduct.
5) PCO is responsible for the management of Human Resources of Governor in Council appointments, which is what Vance’s appointment was. Therefore, PCO was the right place to look into the complaint. (Not political staff)
6) Telford: given how hard it has been to keep partisanship out of this issue as we have seen as of late, that is why it’s important to have an independent public service to look into these complaints. (Agree!)
7) Telford: acknowledges more steps need to be taken to improve safety conditions in the military. The govt has taken many steps but there is more to be done. Re pay increase for Vance, there is a process through the performance management system that these raises go through.
8) Telford: let’s be clear about the difference btwn 2015 & 2018. In 2015, Harper & co had rumours to work with & knew the substance of the complaint. Not so in 2018. They knew it was possible it could be sexual misconduct but it could have been about anything. They didn’t know.
9) Telford: this has been a very difficult week during an exceptionally difficult time. She is very passionate about addressing sexual misconduct in the military and it is disappointing at how partisan this issue has become. We should be working together to improve things.
10) Telford: Minister Sajjan did what he should have, which is to seek advice. He then acted on that advice, which was to refer the Ombudsman to PCO. Minister Sajjan is focussed on inclusivity in the military.
11) Telford’s testimony lasted two hours. My take: not sure what more could’ve been done in 2018. PCO tried to investigate. The complainant wanted it to remain confidential. Plus you can’t fire or deny a raise to someone on the basis of unproven allegations. #cdnpoli