Integrity commissioner complaint filed over mayor’s remark at Black Education Fund event

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The saga of slip-of-mouth by Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown continues after an official complaint was filed with the city’s integrity commissioner.

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Many attendees at the August 22 Black Education Fund (BEF) event celebrated the success of many black students. Brown abused during an online ceremony Live-streamed to community members.

During his speech, many listeners heard him refer to Brampton as “Brown Town” in oral slips, although Brown and his office denied what he said and offered several explanations. The derogatory term is often associated with the diverse communities living in the city.


Screenshot of the video ceremony on YouTube, where the closed caption read that Mayor Patrick Brown said “in Brown’s town.”

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The group said several calls to publicly apologize went unanswered and an official complaint was filed with the commissioner on September 1.

Brown’s office declined to comment. brampton guardian about a complaint or possible investigation.

David Bosveld, who filed the complaint, said that Brown’s behavior violated Rule 15 under the council’s code of conduct, which states that “members shall at all times behave with proper etiquette.”

His complaint goes further, stating that after requests from him and others retaliated, during a WhatsApp group chat, Meyer publicly apologized to the BEF.

As a member of the Mayor’s Black Advisory Council, Bosveld said he and three other members were removed from the WhatsApp chat group.

Frances Bradshaw, senior adviser to the mayor, said that Boesveld can still participate in the advisory council through Zoom meetings and that the chat group was originally started during the 2018 municipal election for the mayor’s supporters.

Bosveld said electoral matters were never discussed and the chat group was titled “Mayer’s Black Advisory”. He noted a screenshot of the group description that said “connecting Mayor Brown with the Black African and Caribbean community of the City of Brampton continues news and events.”

Grievous Brown requested an apology to the council and reinstated Bosveld and the other members to the chat group. Despite Bosveld and others denying what they heard, Brown said he has apologized more than once in a WhatsApp group when the incident was raised during a chat shortly after the incident.

Some community members believe the mayor is “gaslighting” them, refusing to acknowledge what the audience heard during the ceremony.

“I think his actions speak louder than his words. His gaslighting and defiance, his disrespect for black youth that even if the remarks weren’t directed at him, to put it down, created trauma and they Traumas contribute to long-lasting effects,” said Christine Macklin, director of human rights at Unifor and keynote speaker at the ceremony.

McLean also said that the apology is not the “meat and potatoes” of the situation, but what Brown (and others in his office) can learn from the experience.

“I think it’s important to show support. We make mistakes, we all do, but it’s about acknowledging the impact,” she said.

As a result, McLean recommends anti-racism work as a city and an open patronage between the mayor and BEF members as the next step.

According to the city, the integrity commissioner reviews each complaint “in some way,” although not every complaint is thoroughly investigated.

At the time of publication of this article, the Integrity Commissioner had not yet responded to brampton guardian, confirming whether or not the complaint will proceed for full investigation.

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