An online petition by Leith White (right) demands details of the investigation that found Langley City Mayor Val van den Broek (inset) guilty of “conduct unbecoming a member of City council.” (File)

An online petition by Leith White (right) demands details of the investigation that found Langley City Mayor Val van den Broek (inset) guilty of “conduct unbecoming a member of City council.” (File)

Petition says investigation into Langley City Mayor Val van den Broek’s conduct must be made public

Makes ‘no sense’ to suspend van den Broek when neighbouring Surrey mayor isn’t, organizer says

An online petition is calling on Langley City to reveal why Mayor Val van den Broek was stripped of her committee responsibilities when her Surrey counterpart wasn’t.

Posted to gopetition.com on Saturday, May 14, as “Langley City Council – Release the FULL INVESTIGATIVE REPORT used to CENSURE Mayor Val van den Broek,” the petition was created by Leith White.

White, who is pastor at Friends Langley Vineyard church, told the Langley Advance Times he launched the petition as a private citizen, not in his church capacity.

READ ALSO: Langley City council censures mayor over ‘conduct unbecoming’

White said it doesn’t make sense that van den Broek was suspended when Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum was still “operating in full capacities as Mayor” even though he is facing a criminal charge of public mischief over his claim that an opponent of the planned Surrey police replacement for the RCMP deliberately ran over his foot.

McCallum, who commands a majority on Surrey council, has been able to fend off attempts to make him step down from the Metro Vancouver Board and its committees, the TransLink Mayors’ Council, and his position as chairs of the Surrey Police Board Board.

On May 12, Langley City council issued a statement that said the mayor had been censured for “conduct unbecoming a member of City council.”

Without going into detail, the statement said the matter related to the City Respectful Workplace Policy, the Workers Compensation Act and the Occupational Health and Safety Guidelines and Policies, and had been independently investigated by a third party with experience in workplace law.

“What are ordinary citizens supposed to think given these two situations?” Leith commented.

“One hand, we have a mayor charged in accordance to criminal code still operating in full capacity [and on the other] a mayor stripped of capacities because of a piecemealed report to the public. The people of Langley City should know the full truth.”

Citing confidentiality and privacy legislation, the City announcement said council members were not able to discuss the details of the matter.

“Council took the matter very seriously and would not have taken such actions over a minor concern. Council assures the community that due process and procedural fairness were followed,” the City’s statement said.

White said he worked with the mayor to organize an temporary extreme weather emergency shelter at Douglas Park Community School during a record cold snap in December.

“She was a huge support and really helped,” White remarked.

READ ALSO: Backpacks, blankets distributed to Langley homeless

As of Tuesday morning, 28 people had signed the petition.

In announcing its decision, the City announcement said the matter related to the City’s Respectful Workplace Policy, the Workers Compensation Act and the Occupational Health and Safety Guidelines and Policies.

“Council took the matter very seriously and would not have taken such actions over a minor concern. Council assures the community that due process and procedural fairness were followed,” the City’s announcement said.

Mayor van den Broek was removed from various committees and positions she has as mayor, including the Fraser Health Municipal Advisory Council, Healthier Community Partnerships, Langley Christmas Bureau, Langley Christmas Wish Breakfast, Langley Local Immigration Partnership and Youth Advisory Committee.


Is there more to the story? Email: dan.ferguson@langleyadvancetimes.com

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