Friday, January 30, 2009

Don Weitz' Statement of Claim Against CKLN Radio Inc.

Statement of Claim Against CKLN Radio:

Mike Phillips, former Station Manager

Tony Barnes, Program Director

Name: Don Weiitz

Address: 1401-38 Orchard View Blvd., Toronto,ON M4R 2G3

Draft Statement:

I, Don Weitz, am lodging this complaint of wrongful and unjust dismissal against CKLN Radio (88.1FM) in Toronto .

This claim is specifically directed at two (2) members of CKLN Management: former Station Manager Mike Phillips, and Program Director Tony Barnes. For approximately twelve (12) years, I have been a volunteer programmer at CKLN.

Specifically, I have been host and producer of the program "Antipsychiatry Radio", in 1994 it was originally titled "Shrinkrap”.

On May 5, 2008, I received the following letter from Mike Phillips that stated in full: "Please be advised that your volunteer services at CKLN Radio Inc are no loner required effective immediately." This letter is signed "Mike Phillips, Station Manager".

In that May 5 letter, there was no reason or explanation given for my dismissal; I also have never received any advance notice or warning of my dismissal, and never received any criticism of my Antipsychiatry program. Approximately two (2) weeks later, I and many other volunteer programers, was physically locked out, barred from the CKLN studio - again without advance notice, warning or explanation. In addition, my CKLN entry card was electronically deactivated - without warning, advance notice or explanation. As host and producer, Antipsychiatry Radio featured informed opinion, commentary and criticism of the psychiatric system and community-based alternatives in Canada. The program content frequently featured exclusive interviews and dissident commentaries with psychiatric survivors and antipsychiatry activists, as well as nationally-respected academics, feminists, and mental health lawyers. To the best of my knowledge, "Antipsychiatry Radio" was unique and empowering. It was unique because there was and still is no similar antipsychiatry program produced by psychiatric survivors in Ontario or Canada;. It was empowering because it reached out to and provided a powerful voice for psychiatric survivors - some of the most marginalized, discriminated against, stigmatized and oppressed citizens in Canada.

In dismissing me, the CKLN Management seriously violated my human rights and Charter rights - specifically my right to freedom of opinion and expression, and my right to “security of the person.” At the same time, CKLN Management also seriously deprived many listeners of CKLN Radio valuable opportunities for receiving critical information and informed opinion on the "mental health system", its many abuses, “mad culture”, and several alternatives. In effect, CKLN Management has silenced a powerful and empowering voice for psychiatric survivors, antipsychiatry activists, and social justice advocates in Canada; it has done so in a callous, insensitive, irresponsible, and undemocratic manner.

Further, in dismissing me and eliminating my program, CKLN Management has directly and seriously violated parts of its Mandate or Mission Statement. For example, CKLN Management has violated this major statement in its Mandate: "Provide Toronto's diverse and rapidly changing audience with the opportunity to hear a wide range of differing cultural expressions and thereby encourage communication, solidarity and cooperation between and among oppressed communities and constituencies." The program's constituencies included psychiatric survivors, “mental health consumers”, antipsychiatry activists, and social justice advocates.

As an elderly citizen with a chronic heart condition, this dismissal has caused me considerable anxiety and stress. I have absolutely no doubt that I have been dealt with unjustly and request justice. I request reinstatement as host and producer of ”Antipsychiatry Radio” at CKLN Radio, and adequate financial compensation in the amount of ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Legal Update - Don Weitz (Anti Psych Radio) @ Small Claims

Don Weitz, locked out programmer and host of Anti Pysch Radio (Friday WOM News, 6-7 pm), has filed a suit against appointed managers Phillips & Barnes (responsible for his dismissaland 50 others). A "mediation" session has been scheduled for Monday Feb. 2nd at 1:30pm in Small Claims Court, Rm 302, 3rd floor, 47 Sheppard Ave. East (Yonge/Sheppard).

Only "immediate parties" will be allowed in the room. If supporters want to come up, they will have to sit outside and wait for the results of the session. If there's no settlement, the case will go to court. Please keep your eyes on this blog for further updates and requests for solidarity.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Pickets & Organizing Continue!

Our struggle continues to reclaim CKLN. All assistance, help and solidarity is needed and appreciated. Please consider joining our organizing efforts or our Sunday pickets.


Pickets are on!! Come down and join us every Sunday at NOON in front of the Student Centre (55 Gould Street).

Organizing and planning meetings are held after pickets. For more info drop us a line at

This IWD.. Support campus-community radio & locked-out CKLN programmers!

Join our national radio direct action!


Wednesday March 11th, from 5-10pm (EST)

In 2008, 53 volunteer programmers were 'fired' from campus-community radio station CKLN 88.1FM in Toronto without explanation. Tune-in to a live broadcast by former CKLN hosts and DJs, as they stream onto the internet and reclaim the lost airwaves.

Marking International Women's Day, the 'fired' programmers include the hosts of CKLN's only feminist program, as well as many other women, trans and queer, activist and marginalized programmers. This 5-hour broadcast will feature voices otherwise silenced in the mainstream, as well as focus on community grassroots media across this country, its significance and importance.

You can support this radio action by carrying any portion of this broadcast, live or via the archives, which will be available in high-quality over the internet. CKUT Radio in Montreal, CHRY in Toronto, CJUM in Manitoba and Co-op Radio in Vancouver are confirmed as re-broadcasters. You too can help make this national radio direct action a success, confirm your station's participation today, email:

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Legal Update - Claims Filed Against Mis/Management

Long time CKLN contributors and locked-out programmers Don Weitz (OCAP/AntiPsych Radio) and Usheak Koroma (WOM News/Sounds of Africa) have filed at Small Claims Court against the mis/management responsible for their illegitimate dismissals. Separate legal action was taken by these two individuals specifically against former Interim Station Manager Mike Phllips and current Program Director Tony Barnes. The claims allege "wrongful dismissal and unfair treatment" as their cause/reason. A hearing will take place if "mediation with the immediate parties" is not successfully carried out. Keep your eyes on this blog for updates re. court date/time and support needed for these two actions.

Right-Wing Board Purges Community Voices at CKLN 88.1FM
by Kabir Joshi-Vijayan
Basics Issue #12 (Jan/Feb 2009)

For decades CKLN (Ryerson University’s campus-community radio station) has represented the people on Toronto’s airwaves. It had dozens of programmes that showcased community mobilizations alongside international resistance to war and occupation. It was the only station in the city to celebrate Afrikan liberation week and PRIDE, while featuring the best jazz, reggae and hip hop in the country. Its flagship program, Saturday Morning Live, brought all of these elements together, with great music, a community voice, and current events from a working-class and internationalist perspective. Hosted by Norman Otis Richmond – a Vietnam War resistor and well-known revolutionary and pan-Africanist – the show has been the voice for the city’s Black and working-class community for over 25 years. But not anymore because since last winter CKLN’s board of directors has run the station into the ground!

Back in February of 2008, CKLN’s membership (150 community reps including Ryerson students and volunteers who financially support the station) held a meeting about the troubling move by the board of directors away from the community vision of the station and towards a corporate and commercialist model. The membership voted with an overwhelming 90% to impeach the current board, and demanded that the clique of corporate hacks step down. But the board refused to heed democratic will, and instead they began a ruthless campaign of firing any and all hosts who supported the membership’s demands.

Dozens of CKLN’s most popular programmes have been cancelled, and over 55 hard-working long time volunteers and paid programmers have been banned. These purges especially targeted shows that represented left-wing and marginalized voices. The station’s only feminist programs, Radio Cliteracy and Frequency Feminisms, were terminated, while Audrey Redman (residential school survivor and one of the only indigenous voices on Toronto radio) was yanked from her mic as she interviewed other locked-out hosts. Campus and Toronto Police have been frequently called to take away fired hosts as well as concerned listeners attempting to voice their concerns. And then, on December 13th Norman hosted his last show before being “temporarily” suspended. No legitimate reason was given for this termination of one of Toronto’s most popular programs and programmers, except that it was “financial”. Meanwhile the rogue Board has dodged the public release of financial documents as mandated by the CKLN constitution.

Furious listeners, CKLN members and locked out hosts are organizing to take back their radio station. Voice your anger at the CKLN takeover and join us on the picket lines as we fight for the termination of these fraudulent right-wingers masquerading as the board of directors. We will take back our CKLN!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

List of Dismissed, Locked Out & Silenced from CKLN


From May 2008 to January 2009

1. Denise Benson - Mental Chatter
2. Nik Red - Afrotransit
3. Francis Yee Loy aka DJ San Fran - Afrotransit
4. Mano Narayanan aka DJ Dialect - Bruckbeat Radio
5. Cheldon Paterson aka DJ Vision - Bruckbeat Radio
6. Don Weitz - Word of Mouth News Friday (OCAP Radio/Anti-psychiatry Radio)
7. Judy Koch - Word of Mouth News Friday (OCAP Radio)
8. Stef Gude - Word of Mouth News Friday (OCAP Radio)
9. Susy Alvarez - Word of Mouth News Friday host/producer
10. Francisco Villegas - Word of Mouth News Friday (No one is Illegal Radio)
11. Paloma Villegas - Word of Mouth News Friday (No one is Illegal Radio)
12. Ryan Hayes - Word of Mouth News Friday (No one is Illegal Radio)
13. Yen Chu - Word of Mouth News Friday (No one is Illegal Radio)
14. Dale Whitmore - Word of Mouth News Friday (tech/OCAP Radio Fill-in host)
15. David Barnard aka Dr. Feelgood - Lowdown 2 Updown
16. Audrey Redman - Honour the Earth
17. Koroma U-Sheak - Sounds of Africa/Word of Mouth News Thursday
18. Lisa "West" Skeete – Reggaemania
19. Ron Nelson – Reggaemania
20. Verlia Stephens - Limin' in the African Diaspora
21. Barbara Goslawski – Frameline
22. Heather Douglas - Frameline/Word of Mouth News Thursday
23. Gein Wong - Frequency Feminisms
24. Oriel Varga - Frequency Feminisms
25. Anna Saini - Frequency Feminisms
26. Neena Saloiya - Frequency Feminisms
27. Joeita Gupta - Frequency Feminisms
28. Aramara Leal - Frequency Feminisms
29. Yolisa Dalamba - Frequency Feminisms
30. Chloe Onari - Dat Dere
31. Sharron McLeod - Dat Dere
32. Gary Topp - Dat Dere
33. DJ SOS - On the Strength
34. Daniella Moss - Radio Cliteracy
35. Jessica Yee - Radio Cliteracy
36. Laura Janecka - Radio Cliteracy/Ryerson Student
37. Sarah Reaburn - Radio Cliteracy/Ryerson Student
38. Daya Lye - Radio Cliteracy/Ryerson Student
39. Emily Sadowski - Radio Cliteracy
40. Ruby teskey-williams Radio Cliteracy
41. Black Krishna - Rude Awakening Tuesday
42. Claudia McKoy – Upsurgence
43. Ron Gaskin – AM/FM
44. Carmelle Wolfson - Radio Cliteracy
45. Omme Rahemtullah - Saturday Morning Live (Tech & co-host)
46. Farid Omar - Saturday Morning Live (Amandla/GRILA)
47. Tanya Gulliver - Saturday Morning Live (Social Justice News/Ryerson Instructor)
48. Ian Brown - Saturday Morning Live
50. Ameth Lo - Saturday Morning Live (Amandla/GRILA)
51. Audrey Wandolo - Saturday Morning Live (Amandla/GRILA)
52. Wasun - Saturday Morning Live (Freedom Ciphers)
53. Rakim Shabazz – Saturday Morning Live
54. David McNally - Saturday Morning Live (York University PoliSci Dept. Chair)
55. Black Action Defence Committee (BADC) crew – Saturday Morning Live
56. Rackel Saunders – Saturday Morning Live (community calendar)
57. Ayinde Blake – Saturday Morning Live (film critic & son of the late Milton Blake)
58. Maria Elena Escobar - Ventana al Barrio
59. Ilona Molnar - Frequency Feminisms

Long Time Contributors
60. Dr. Gerald Horne - Saturday Morning Live (author/academic and anaylist)
61. Mumia-Abu Jamal – Saturday Morning Live (political prisoner/writer/contributor)

STAFF FIRED/DISMISSED/RESIGNED (due to the chilly climate)

1. News director Kristin Schwartz (10 years of service to CKLN), fired, union member
2. Fundraising Coordinator Daniel Vandervoort, resigned at the demand of illegitimate board, union member
3. Interim News Director Tara Michelle Ziniuk, resigned
4. Program Director Tim May, resigned
5. Music Librarian Tien Providence, fired, union member
6. Production, Mark Bialkowski, resigned, union member
7. Assistant News director Norman Otis Richmond, "laid off", union member & producer/host of Saturday Morning Live and Diasporic Music (these shows have been replaced with archived material)