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Hamish McKenzie - pissing all over the place, London, Ontario

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Another leak from VUW

Just in case you need any more convincing that the outcome of the Salient versus Victoria University case was an out-an-out victory for Salient and a huge embarrassment for the university, take a look at this memo to staff from Vic's Chancellor of Vice.

MEMO STARTS

The following message is dispatched on behalf of the
Vice-Chancellor,
Professor Pat Walsh:

Further to my email on Monday afternoon, the University has now reached an agreement with VUWSA and Salient that will see the return of the documents Salient was not entitled to have, the release of the October 3 issue of Salient, and undertakings as to no further production or use of the material.

I know that many of you will have wondered at the action taken by the University. Although we will not be hearing this matter in court, I wish to explain some of the background to this action.

Victoria University operates in a very open information culture. We rarely use provisions to exclude the public from our meetings, whether that be at Academic Board or University Council. When we do so, the reasons are always provided and are within our legal right to do so.

In the vast majority of cases, exclusion or withholding of information is temporary and disclosure takes place once our governance processes have moved to the next step, or our legal or relationship obligations have been met.

We have a duty to ensure that we can function effectively. If we are placed in the position where a Vice-Chancellor, due to fear of publication, feels unable to provide Council with full information, sound out options or even just float an idea with the
governance body, then we would have a serious question as to whether the University can operate effectively. Protecting the integrity of our governance process is vital. What this court action has demonstrated is the cavalier disregard with which influential members of the student body hold the governance processes of this university, and indeed, the processes of the Court.


For the rest of the memo -- all 669 words -- email hjlmckenzie@yahoo.co.nz.