City politicians appoint mayor’s campaign boss and Liberal staffer to police board | CBC News
City politicians have appointed the mayor’s campaign manager and current Liberal staffer Ryan Gauss to the London Police Services Board, a spot vacated by lawyer Susan Toth, who called for the spot to be filled by a diverse candidate when she stepped down in January.
Gauss works for London North Centre Liberal MP Peter Fragiskatos and ran Mayor Josh Morgan’s campaign in the most recent municipal election.
Votes for Ryan Gauss
- Josh Morgan
- Steve Hillier
- Jerry Prebil
- Steve Lehman
- Peter Cuddy
- Shawn Lewis
- Paul Van Meerbergen
- Susan Stevenson
Votes for Joseph Wabegijig
- Anna Hopkins
- Skylar Franke
- Corrine Rahman
- Sam Trosow
- David Derreira
- Hadleigh McAllister
Gauss was one of 54 candidates who applied to sit on the police board, which provides direction and oversight into police operations. The current board is in the midst of selecting a new police chief. It has one diverse member, Ali Chahbar, a lawyer.
In the first round of voting, only three candidates got votes from city councillors at Tuesday’s committee meeting: Gauss, Zeba Hashmi and Joseph Wabegijig.
Hashmi is a community worker who ran as a Liberal candidate in the recent provincial election and sits on several boards in the city. Wabegijig is the executive director of Atlohsa Family Healing Services and sits on the Wikwemikong Tribal Police Services Board.
In the second round of voting, Gauss got seven votes, Wabegijig got six and Hashmi got one.
In the third round of voting, Gauss got eight votes and Bagegijig got six.
Toth is a human rights and labour lawyer who called for council to make sure her replacement was racialized.
“There is an onus on city council to say, ‘What can we do to attract people to that position? How can we actively seek those voices rather than take the passive back seat and go, well, you know, whoever applies applies and we’ll choose from those people,'” Toth told CBC News at the time.
“Even though I’m a person of colour, I don’t speak with the voice of somebody who has the lived experience of being a Black woman, for example, or an Indigenous person. It’s really critical to have that.”
The appointment still has to be officially approved by full council, however the committee that made the decision was comprised of all councillors.
More to come