The Whistle-blower Forum by Diane Shay – Election Promises Broken re: Transparency, Integrity & Accountability in Cornwall

The world will not be destroyed by evil but by those who watch without doing anything” Albert Einstein.

Well it’s that time again to renew councils contracts through our election process. When one is hired to do a specific job and fails miserably should they get their contracts extended another four years? This question will be answered by the taxpayers,  but lets review the last four years.

Attached is the video of current Mayor, Lesley O’Shaughnessy’s campaign promises with the rest of council jumping on the band wagon. As a direct result Mayor Kilger tried to settle my lawsuit weeks before the election.

Once elected this strategy had served its purpose and was never discussed again. It seemed to be a challenge to even review the workplace harassment and violence policy which is a annual legislative requirement.  Mayor O’Shaughnessy sent me a copy of the policy which was dated 2016. Given that the Mayor was viewed as a whistle-blower by Ms. Allen you would think he would been more proactive. They are certainly good at talking the talk but walking the walk is a whole other issue.

In 2014,  when my back was against a wall, city managers, coworkers and a lot of people in general turned their backs on me because I dared to speak up for an elderly abuse victim.

I was later briefly elated that a potential city mayor (Cornwall’s current mayor) had my back. He used mine and others stories/ struggles to get elected. Once elected he did a complete 180.   I not only went to the bottom of his agenda, he and council were quick to dismiss my case only months after the election by trying to get it thrown out of court.

Bernadette Clement,  who sat on the GSDL Board met with a whistle-blower to discuss her complaints related to resident care. During this meeting Ms. Clement pointed at the whistle-blower wanting to discredit Ms. Derouchie. Although council as a whole may not have been aware of my issue since Mr. Fitzpatrick had not informed them of the Ministry charges, but Ms. Clement should have been well aware in her role. Human Rights have never been high on council agenda as history can attest to.

There was also the Rob Hickley story, a deputy chief who just wanted to follow the recruiting protocol and for this he was retaliated against. Once more Mayor Kilger and Paul Fitzpatrick throwing their weight around, destroying peoples lives and careers without a second thought.

Unfortunately retaliation can come in all forms, as with Jamie Gilcig, for addressing council on issues of accountability and transparency related to a conflict of Interest with three councillors (O’Shaughnessy, Hebert and E. MacDonald) who voted to provide funding for the Benson University Steering Committee which all three sat on. 

In 2016 Norm Levac,  a man I greatly respected,  developed a Code of Conduct for elected officials and local boards but the only copy is on the City website which does not appear to have council approval since it isn’t signed or dated.

Regardless, this policy will only be enforced if it is convenient much like the Whistle-blower, Harassment policy and legislative requirements. They are above the law and they know it with tax dollars providing their means.

I write this solely for the purpose of warning voters, be very weary of public officials and those who aspire to become one. Take their words with a grain of salt and look at their past actions. Actions such as, where did they work, volunteer, and what charities have they given their own money to. These actions will define them and speak louder than words could ever do.

Although many of these people are gone with lucrative severance packages unfortunately the culture is alive and well still at City Hall in Cornwall.

Accountability, transparency and integrity is what taxpayers voted for and deserve. To imply that this council embodies these beliefs is paramount to calling all Whistle-blowers liars.

At the end of the day council can be part of the problem or part of the solution. Historically they have failed.

Take Care,

Diane Shay


  1. Excellent article and it gives us plenty to think about. Of the current 11 around the horseshoe I think there is only 1 or 2 I would vote for. And of the 32 running for council I’d have trouble finding 10 to vote for. Of the 4 running for mayor there is not one worthy of voting for. The clique MUST be eliminated. And the city managers MUST be cleaned out and start fresh.

  2. Author

    Hugger that’s why I wrote my story about deciding to run before deciding to run. The public had a chance to have at least one candidate who would truly work for all of the community, get a grip on taxes, and try to move forward, but it failed. Same for several other candidates. When, and if, the people of Cornwall really crave change it’ll happen, but not till then.

  3. What is needed in Cornwall is a complete different mind set and a real people not followers and get enough courage and strength built up and DRAIN THE SWAMP. As long as people (sheeple) don’t wake up and face the problems (the real problems) then things will never change and then why complain when you all don’t get together and do something about it to chase the clique literally out of town.

  4. As a whistleblower against the city,over 500,000 was given to two incompetent managers and don’t forget the raise that the former CAO gave himself before shamingly leaving office. How many council members supported the payout yet allowed the whistleblowers to fend for themselves without any support whatsovever including manipulating the statute of limitations against Diane?

  5. Jewelz68

    I was a whistlblower in 2008 and you came forward with in 2010 with a multitude of other issues in 2010. My issues were kept under wrap for years. It wasn’t until 2011 than I realized the only justice I was going to get was to go public which I will continue to do at every oportunity until the day I die.

    Diane Shay

  6. Well Diane, the problem they created is they have discouraged anyone to come forward and had 4 years to correct the wrongs but didn’t. The fact is who will step forward when you are abused by your employer. Just like I was when I was told I didn’t need union representation while I was being disciplined for speaking the truth.

  7. That’s just like the city’s casual security guards (employees) that were all terminated several years ago for signing union cards. They signed union cards because they were fed up with harassment and bullying by management. Even the voice of labour, E. MacDonald did not support the security guards then, she didn’t even support the 300 or so striking city workers recently. Hope they remember that!

  8. jewelz68

    Yes, they were only interested in protecting themselves when they should have been protecting residents from the reported and varified abuse. Unfortuately self-preservation at the taxpayer expense is their only goal.


  9. Pete Walbee…Yeap Elaine MacDonald!! One of several councillors who do not understand the concept of conflict of interest UNLESS it benefits her. She’s quick to criticize others for it. But she has no clue on how it is supposed to work. Bye bye Elaine MacDonald.

  10. Diane Shay, you truly know what you’re talking about, and the clique still exists in this city and it’s managers (administration) have all the power. Their contracts with the city protects them. We need to have people in place to change this poisoned landscape. I would have liked to see a united team of 5 or 6 candidates to run for council. Shay, O’Neil, Hickley, Gilcig, Kieleg, Kennedy..

  11. Pete,
    I agree. I am moving back to Cornwall next year so I have to wait for 2022. There is one like-minded candidate in the current race and if taxpayers want change than voting James Brent Charles will be a step in the right direction.


  12. Author

    Diane there’s more than one. Not many more, but at least one 🙂

  13. Jamie,

    I only identify people I trust and all past candidates have had their kick at the can and failed miserably.


  14. Author

    And most of the new ones don’t know what to do to get the public to become aware of them Diane. Last election there was an awesome candidate that nobody voted for; not because they wouldn’t value what he brought to the table, but just because they weren’t aware of him.

  15. Diane Shay, I know the candidate that you mentioned and Brent will get my vote. Nav Canada guy. Real good guy. I had only put my suggested dream team as wishing they’d put their name forward. Jamie, the candidate from last election that you refer to, is he on my list?

  16. Author

    no Pete – he isn’t running again – a lot of people don’t realize that some that are running are holding down day jobs – real day jobs as opposed to the farce that is Kelly Bergeron’s city stipend. Can you imagine being allowed to run when her salary is being paid by the city? The fact that she choose to run under those conditions should impeach her from getting a single vote. It’s so embarrassing to be from Cornwall this election….

  17. Diane Shay are you well to want to move back to Cornwall the place that hurt you very badly. OMG! I don’t know where you get the courage. I would never move back to Cornwall at all. I would only go to visit the Bird Sanctuary and such places outside the town but never ever go to live in Cornwall ever again. What Jamie has gone through and going through is a nightmare.

  18. Diane is a good lady and educated and so is Jamie a good man and educated and you don’t go and let the sheeple of the lower end hurt you folks. I would never ever go back to that town ever again to go through what we went through. Cornwall is not for the educated people but for the reverse (the lower end). You wouldn’t believe the comments and laughter that I saw in the federal government.

  19. Jules,

    If we want the job done right we will have to do it ourselves.

  20. And there it is AGAIN!!!

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