Former CEO of the London Well being Sciences Middle traveled to Florida, Michigan: Assertion of Protection – London


Former London Health Sciences Center CEO Paul Woods traveled to Michigan and Florida after returning with a “noticeable tan,” according to a defense statement filed Thursday on behalf of LHSC.

The statement is in response to a Woods lawsuit for $ 2.5 million that Woods filed after his resignation.

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“To the extent that Dr. Woods’ reputation has been damaged, it is due to his own poor judgment and hypocrisy,” the defense statement said.

“It is not the job of the board of directors of a public hospital to authorize personal travel by hospital staff, nor is there a mechanism for doing so. In addition, Dr. Woods misled the board by withholding important information. He told the CEO about aspects of his trip, but did not tell her that hospital executives had repeatedly raised concerns about his trip.

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“He didn’t ask her advice on taking a week-long vacation to Florida in October. And he hasn’t told her that he plans to travel to Michigan December 19-25, 2020. “

None of the allegations have been proven in court.

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On Jan. 8, LHSC released a statement that Woods had made five trips to the United States to visit family during the pandemic.

At first, the Board of Directors said it supported his continued leadership, but following a public backlash – including a petition that garnered over 7,000 signatures in less than three days – Woods was ousted as President and CEO of LHSC until Jan. 11 .

Woods filed the lawsuit on Jan. 13, seeking damages for “bad faith termination,” loss of reputation and other costs. Board chairwoman Amy Walby announced her resignation from the volunteer position that day and was made public on Jan. 14, although the board stressed that the resignation “is not an admission of wrongdoing”.

In his statement of claim, Woods claimed that while Walby did not officially approve his trip, Walby “took it upon himself to speak to the Board about Dr. Woods ”and that“ at no point did she give Dr. Woods, who told her and the board that a different approval process was required. “

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Woods alleged that the board had announced his trip outside of Canada in advance, raised the matter with Walby for advice, and told him that he had her support and the matter was personal. The statement of claim states: “The chairman said she would advise the board.”

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Woods also alleged that after publishing his trip, the board gave the impression that it was not “open and frank with the board, which is not the case”.

“DR. Woods proactively increased his potential trip to see his immediate family with the Chairman in June, August and October 2020, and at no point has he in any way misled the board or attempted to hide his activities.”

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A Pickering councilor is engaged in a controversy as the chairman of Durham Police Department

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However, according to the LHSC, Woods only told Walby “about aspects of his trip,” claiming Woods withheld important information.

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On Jan. 11, LHSC issued a statement saying that the board had “not given advance notice or authorized its travel outside Canada. There is no process for a public hospital board of directors to authorize a chief executive officer’s personal travel. “

According to the LHSC, the board did not learn of the communication between Woods and Walby until after this statement was published.

“Leaving out this additional context was a bona fide mistake by LHSC in the context of a rapidly evolving situation. LHSC immediately made this clear by publishing another media statement on January 14th, ”in which the board also announced Walby’s resignation.

The Defense Statement also alleges that senior hospital leaders had raised concerns about Woods’ trip as early as March 23.

According to the LHSC, senior vice presidents had trouble reaching Woods on the weekend of March 21 and 22, and learned he had been to Michigan the following Monday.

The statement said Neil Johnson, chief operating officer, and Susan Nickle, chief people officer, expressed concern about Woods’ travels “for his personal health, reputation and organization.”

LHSC claims Woods “got angry” and said his trip did not affect them. According to the LHSC, Woods told Walby on March 23 that “some on my team appear to be upset”.

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The statement also referred to an internal email Woods sent to LHSC staff in November that was covered in the media. He said, “As health workers, we need to go to higher standards when it comes to living and modeling public health policies both inside and outside of our workplace. “

The Defense Statement alleges that staff viewed this as an “unhelpful and persistent assault on frontline health workers who had provided exceptional service and made significant personal sacrifices”.

“As a result,” the defense statement said, “there was a marked negative reaction from hospital staff, doctors and stakeholders” when his travel story was published.

LHSC also claims that “Dr. Woods is no different from anyone else who has vacationed during the pandemic. While his trip to Michigan could be explained by his personal circumstances, his trip to Florida was a public holiday. “

The Defense Statement adds that in response to claims made by the Human Rights Code, Woods was fired “not because his family circumstances made him work from home” but because “he has the trust of the staff and doctors and the community it serves.” who had lost in the light of his own hypocrisy. “

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LHSC moves to dismiss the lawsuit with costs.

The allegations were not examined in court.

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