The mediator, Charles Jago, was accused by one side in early June of being biased. Jago’s bias was reportedly called into question by a lawyer for the teachers’ union as being an advocate for the government rather than a skilled negotiator who can help both parties reach a compromise.
Lawyer John Hodgins said a report in 2006 by Jago allegedly showed that the mediator favored a position held by the government. Moreover, the lawyer alleged that Jago was offered the mediator position prior to the asking the union for a list of mediators who could deal with the contract issues.
BCTF President Susan Lambert expressed disappointment and surprise at the cancellations. Lambert was concerned that the parties have not “tackled any of the very hard issues that are central to this impasse,” referring to the issues the government has brought to the negotiations.
Jago has until the end of June to finalize his report.