Trustee challenges false statements

Contrary to what some nameless online commentators have claimed, Alison McVeigh wants people to know that she doesn’t make $32,000 a year or anything close to it as a trustee on the Langley Board of Education.

She didn’t accept a pay raise, either.

An indignant McVeigh spoke out during the board’s Jan. 25 meeting, saying she was “completely appalled by the vitriol and viciousness of the comments and the number of inaccurate and false statements made by individuals [in online blogs and talkback forums], mostly anonymously.”

McVeigh said she makes just over $19,000 with no benefits package as a trustee.

She added that she and other trustees on the board actually voted to rescind a Dec. 2010 pay hike.

“Everyone is entitled to an opinion,” McVeigh said.

“No one is entitled to spread lies.”

She also took issue with a comment posted on one Vancouver newspaper website this month, which claimed Langley trustees refused to participate in online training sessions offered by the B.C. School Trustees Association.

McVeigh said the statement was false and “slanderous.”

“It’s absolutely astonished me that people hide behind a computer and say whatever they want — whether it is true or not,” McVeigh said.

“Where has civility gone?”

Trustee Cecelia Reekie agreed.

“It’s just incredibly unfair that people can say whatever they want without giving their name,” Reekie said after McVeigh spoke.

“It is hurtful and it is destructive. It doesn’t move us in the right direction.”

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