Brunswick News shakeup 'upsetting and embarrassing,' editor-in-chief says
Company committed to openess and transparency, 'even when it's painful,' says Patrick Brethour
The editor-in-chief of Brunswick News Inc., says the latest shakeup of senior management following an internal ethics probe is "upsetting and embarrassing."
"It's important to our newsroom. It's important to any newsroom. That's what journalism is," he said.
Two senior editors at the Moncton Times & Transcript are no longer with the newspaper in the wake of the investigation related to one editor's acceptance of a trip to Larry's Gulch, the provincial government's fishing lodge.
Al Hogan, the managing editor of the Moncton Times & Transcript, “is no longer employed by Brunswick News” and Murray Guy, the newspaper’s assistant managing editor, has resigned.
John Wishart has been demoted from his position as editor of the Telegraph-Journal to the editor of its editorial and opinion pages.
The investigation found that Guy tried to have Darell Fowlie, who served as the deputy minister of communications for former premier David Alward, alter the guest list before it was released to the media.
Graham’s column said Hogan had not been forthcoming to BNI’s senior managers in 2013 or during the recent investigation and that it was Wishart's decision — in consultation with other journalists — not to publish a news story about the lodge's guest list that year.
"This is obviously upsetting and embarrassing, but we have taken, and we are taking steps to rectify the situation," Brethour told CBC News.
"And I want to add, you know, the errors made by the editors in question, they’re not reflective of our values, or of our journalistic ethics, so that’s why we took the steps we did to safeguard our credibility and to preserve the public trust," he said.
Brethour says he spent Monday discussing the matter with staff. "I think they understand why we did what we did, but it’s a tough day for them for sure," he said.
BNI's decision to go public with the story online Sunday was unrelated to the story breaking on Canadaland, said Brethour.
"We still would have done exactly what we did," he said.
BNI continues to investigate and is seeking the attendance lists for Larry's Gulch for other years, said Brethour.
"If there’s a [follow-up] story to be written that is merited journalistically, we’ll write it. It’s just that simple. Same as with any other issues," he said.