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Letter to Province – from Cindy

by on December 5, 2010

November 30, 2010

Dear Marnie,

“I promise to share and be friend”

It is sad that this promise only applies to Sparks and not all members of Girl Guide organization.

I am horrified, angered, annoyed, disappointed and deeply saddened by the recent treatment of my friend and fellow Guider, Lori, by other members of this organization.  The disrespect and dishonest events that occurred at Camp Caritou on Monday November 29th by the property appraiser, camp consultant and Bev Latva, camp property manager, … and their body guard was nothing short of bullying.  

In good faith, a few local members, including myself and Lori, agreed to meet these people at the camp with the keys at 4:30 pm. We were fully prepared to open doors and allow these people to do their job. We are not happy about the visit to our camp and we may have shared our opinion about it, but we were going to be there.

Then we find out that these people, and a locksmith, showed up at the camp, without notice, in the morning and proceeded to break in and change the locks. It appears the plan was to do what they needed to do, lock us out and leave without even the courtesy or decency of advising us of the change of plans. Fortunately, North Bay, Bonfield and surrounding area are very supportive of our desire to keep and continue to use our camp. We were advised of the underhanded deviousness occurring and we were able to meet these people at the camp. This was not well received. It was so poorly received that when Lori attempted to phone the police, the phone was forcibly removed from her hand. When Lori again attempted to call the police, Bev Latva went so far as to rip the phone from the wall.

Is this how Girl Guides of Canada Ontario Council really wants to treat fellow members? Is this what transformation is really all about? In three years, transforming a sisterhood dedicated to delivering and living the Girl Guide mission, vision, values, promise and law into a bunch of paid thugs coming to Bonfield to bully local Guiders and supporters because we still care about our camp? This is the camp we bought, paid for, maintain and use. This is a camp that has never cost Ontario Council anything. This camp has not contributed to any of the debts of Ontario Council. The camp that we, and our lawyer, still believe should be ours to continue to use.

What now? If we get the locks changed back and continue to use our camp, will you have us arrested? Will you have the police haul away those little Sparks, Brownies and Guides? Or, I suppose, you would prefer this beautiful camp gets left unused and deteriorating for another year until you get around to selling it, while Guiders cancel or just don’t plan camps because we have nowhere to go? Are you looking forward to the money Guides Ontario receives from this sale so you can hire more staff to bully other Guiders who don’t like some new rule? Or invest it in money losing camps in the more populated areas because rural areas can’t come up with enough members so are not worth the effort? Keep it up and you won’t have to worry about Guiding in northern or rural areas? You will have driven us all away.

Please acknowledge receipt of this email and respond.

Yours in Guiding
Cindy Brownlee

  1. Anna permalink

    I really think everyone should look into B-P Scouts. It’s traditional Scouting, based on Lord Baden-Powell’s teachings and ideals, and they allow all girl units.

  2. Kris permalink

    This letter broke my heart. I did not renew my membership this year because I was denied being allowed a unit up here in Kashechewan, and while I have been asked by the community to please try again… these mean, rotten, bullies make me no longer want to expose children to this organization.

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