The Honourable J. David Wake, Integrity Commissioner, today released his report (MPP Hillier No. 2) into a complaint regarding Randy Hillier, Member of Provincial Parliament for Lanark–Frontenac–Kingston. The report is in response to an affidavit submitted by Peggy Sattler, Member of Provincial Parliament for London West, on October 26, 2022, in which she requested an opinion under section 30 of the Members’ Integrity Act, 1994.
Ms. Sattler alleged that Mr. Hillier breached Ontario parliamentary convention when he made social media posts that contained the names and photos of individuals who had recently become seriously ill or passed away and included a claim that COVID-19 vaccines were involved in these cases.
While there was no precedent of Mr. Hillier’s conduct for a finding that there had been a breach of parliamentary convention, following the inquiry, Commissioner Wake found that Mr. Hillier’s posting on social media of the names and faces of individuals and claiming, without foundation, the COVID-19 vaccine was involved in their illnesses and deaths amounted to a breach of parliamentary convention that might readily be presumed.
Having considered the Legislative Assembly’s swift and categorical censure of Mr. Hillier’s conduct in this matter and that Mr. Hillier issued a public apology to the families involved, the Commissioner nonetheless balanced the mitigating and aggravating features of this case and recommends that the Assembly reprimand Mr. Hillier.
This report is being released simultaneously with another report relating to Mr. Hillier initiated by a complaint from Ian Arthur, Member of Provincial Parliament for Kingston and the Islands. That request relates to whether Mr. Hillier breached parliamentary convention and section 3 of the Act by using personal information from constituents for partisan purposes. The news release for that report (identified as MPP Hillier no. 1) is available here.
Both reports can be found at www.oico.on.ca under MPP Integrity, Commissioner’s Reports.
The Commissioner is not available for interviews.
About the OIC
The Office has seven mandates under five pieces of legislation:
- Members’ Integrity, providing confidential conflict of interest advice to MPPs and conducting inquiries into alleged breaches;
- Ministers’ Staff Ethical Conduct, providing conflict of interest advice and direction to public servants in ministers’ offices;
- Lobbyist Registration, operating Ontario’s lobbyist registry and conducting investigations into potential non-compliance;
- Disclosure of Wrongdoing, receiving whistleblowing disclosures from current and former members of the Ontario Public Service;
- Public Sector Ethics, providing conflict of interest advice and direction to Ethics Executives in ministries and public bodies; and,
- Expenses Review:
- Reviewing the travel, meal and hospitality expenses of Cabinet ministers, parliamentary assistants, Opposition leaders, and their staff; and,
- Reviewing the travel, meal and hospitality expenses of selected agencies.
Contact: Michelle Renaud, Manager, Communications and Outreach | email@example.com |