An Update from the LRSD Board Regarding Trustee Conduct
The Louis Riel School Division Board of Trustees is aware of posts Trustee Francine Champagne has made on her Facebook page that have targeted the 2SLGBTQIA+ community and been harmful to our entire community.
In response, at our regular meeting on June 6, the board suspended Trustee Champagne for three months for breaching the Board Code of Conduct specific to social media use and disregarding Policy AC: Respect for Human Diversity.
This is the strongest sanction possible under the Manitoba Public Schools Act.
As the opening statement of Policy AC states, The Louis Riel School Division affirms the underlying principle of human rights, namely the recognition of the individual worth and dignity of every person. In voting unanimously to suspend, the board reaffirmed its commitment to safe, caring, welcoming and inclusive working and learning environments, respect for human diversity and human rights, the worth and dignity of every person, and that a person’s self-identification is the sole measure of their gender.
Trustee Champagne’s comments do not reflect the viewpoints of the school board or the Senior Leadership Team. When her transphobic social media posts were brought to our attention, we acted immediately. We hope that Trustee Champagne takes these three months to reflect on how she will reconcile with the community she serves.
As board members, we have a duty and a responsibility to hold each other accountable for actions deemed inappropriate, that are against policy, or that breach our code of conduct. In this case, the despicable comments levelled at members of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community compelled the strongest measure we could take as a Board.