06 November 2008

Old Boys Club Rules at Health Authority

No woman who lives on Vancouver Island would be surprised by the report that transgressions done by male employees of the Vancouver Island Health Authority receive less stern, if any, disciplinary action than do transgressions done by female employees.

A hospital security guard who had sex with a psychiatric patient still works for the Vancouver Island Health Authority. So does an officer who was caught on video tape viewing pornography on a hospital computer while on the job.

But Suzana Kalyn, accused of gossiping about officers looking at pornography on work time and of breaching confidentiality, was fired.

“I find that male Officers who engaged in serious inappropriate workplace conduct were treated with fairness and in some instances leniency,” wrote B.C. Human Rights Tribunal member Marlene Tyshynski in a 118-page ruling. “Ms. Kalyn, who was alleged to have gossiped and breached a questionably interpreted internal 'confidentiality clause', was not.”

When I first moved to the Island from southern Ontario, I was shocked by how dominated by males virtually all management positions were. Only businesses or services such as credit unions reflected any attempt at balance.

VIHA is no exception in terms of the striking imbalance in the male to female representation in management.

So it's no surprise to me that in such an environment, the old "boys will be boys" tacit support continues as does the harsher treatment of women who fail to measure up to a much higher standard - also enforced by men.

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