Seabird Island executive officer apologizes for ‘not preventing’ retirement gathering amid COVID restrictions

An April 28 apology letter from Seabird Island executive director Jason Campbell. Campbell said he allowed a gathering to happen at the Seabird Island Muster Station and voluntarily paid the maximum $1,000 fine. (photo/Seabird Island)An April 28 apology letter from Seabird Island executive director Jason Campbell. Campbell said he allowed a gathering to happen at the Seabird Island Muster Station and voluntarily paid the maximum $1,000 fine. (photo/Seabird Island)
A response letter from the Seabird Island Chief and Council. Seabird Island authorities thanked Jason Campbell for owning up to the situation leading up to the gathering and encouraged the community to stay safe and positive as the COVID-19 pandemic winds on. (Photo/Seabird Island)A response letter from the Seabird Island Chief and Council. Seabird Island authorities thanked Jason Campbell for owning up to the situation leading up to the gathering and encouraged the community to stay safe and positive as the COVID-19 pandemic winds on. (Photo/Seabird Island)

Seabird Island executive officer Jason Campbell issued a public apology to the community after “not preventing a retirement luncheon from happening.”

In addition to going against COVID-safe guidelines from the province, Campbell said his choice went against Seabird Island’s COVID-19 Emergency Protection Law, specifically a regulation prohibiting public gatherings and parties of two or more people without written permission of Seabird Island Council.

“I would like to thank the person who reported this as we all need to keep each other accountable for our actions,” Campbell wrote in the April 28 letter. “I regret the temporary lapse in judgement and rest assured this will not happen again. It is my job as the executive director to lead by example, and I did not do that today.”

READ ALSO: FNHA announces COVID-19 exposure at Seabird Island Dental Clinic

Campbell said he would voluntarily pay the maximum fine of $1,000.

Seabird Island Chief Jim Harris and the council thanked Campbell for taking ownership of the situation and said “appropriate actions have been taken.”

“We all have our own teachings and family traditions which feels at war with the COVID ‘rules,” The council wrote in a public statement. “Practices that were normal to us are no longer safe, and this causes pain, anger and sorrow. As imperfect beings, occasionally we slip and make errors in judgement. The best we can do is own them and be accountable.”

READ ALSO: 2021 Seabird Island Festival cancelled due to COVID-19

Chief and Council encouraged the community to continue to show kindness and encourage one another as they navigate the pandemic.

“Everyone has the power to keep others safe; we do not want to lose anyone else to COVID-19,” the letter concludes. “COVID has taken enough from us already. Please don’t let it continue to cause pain.”


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