Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Fired EIC of The Tyee suing the magazine for wrongful dismissal

Appointed just nine months ago as editor-in-chief of the online magazine The Tyee, which she described as having "the best newsroom in British Columbia", Jane Armstrong was fired May 28 and is now suing the publication's owner, Countercurrent Media Ltd., for wrongful dismissal. She has been replaced by longtime managing editor Robyn Smith. 

Armstrong's suit described the company's actions as “high-handed, malicious, arbitrary, or highly reprehensible.”

Armstrong was a former editor with Open File and with the Toronto Star and the Globe and Mail and moved to Vancouver from Halifax to take the job. A story in the Vancouver Province reported
In a notice of civil claim filed in B.C. Supreme Court, Armstrong says the special circumstances which are of import in determining damages include the fact she is 55 years old and was induced to come to Vancouver for a specialized position.

She also alleges there was “bad faith” in terminating her without a positive, or any, letter of recommendation and in her being replaced by a “much younger” employee. 
“That left the plaintiff unemployed in an extremely difficult job market for journalists. She is 55 years old, in a specialized and difficult employment market. She has no realistic chance of obtaining comparable employment.”
In announcing the changes in editorial leadership last Friday (June 5), The Tyee expressed gratitude for Armstrong's professionalism.
"Jane's vast reporting experience, professional integrity, and passion for journalistic excellence were much appreciated by everyone at The Tyee," said Tyee co-founder Michelle Hoar.

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