Complaint #6 – Submitted July 17, 2019
The complainant requests anonymity. The complaint is similar to complaints 4 and 5 and also requests the disqualification of Robert Gartner as a KPFT listener candidate. The complaint states “Mr. Gartner has been removed as a volunteer at KPFT, and even banned from KPFT’s building and property, and station staff have been warned to call the police if he does come on the premises, because of repeated harassment of LSB members, programmers, staff, and other volunteers. Women have especially felt threatened by him because of things he has said and by the flood of e-mails he has sent to them, but they are not the only ones he has harassed, slandered, and worse.” This complaint differs from the other three in that it provides the text of the policy motion passed by the Pacifica National Board in 2013 to declare a member “not in good standing”
The text can be found here: https://kpftx.org/archives/pnb/pnb130124/pnb130124_2514_minutes.pdf
The policy states:
Be it resolved that:
The following categories of people are not members in good standing of the Pacifica Foundation as defined in Article 4, Section 2A and Article 3 Section 8A of the Pacifica Foundation Bylaws:
1. Individuals whose actions have been declared by a court of law to be breaches of fiduciary duty, or breaches of the duty of loyalty or the duty of care.
2. Individuals who have been separated involuntarily from foundation employment for cause.
3. Individuals who have been banned from station premises due to threatening behavior or creating an unsafe environment for others.
The motion goes on to state:
Any member of the foundation may identify another member whose actions have caused the loss of good standing by giving notice to the National Elections Supervisor. Any individual whose good standing is questioned per these restrictions shall be provided with full due process rights to be notified of the decision and to appeal it. The initial determination shall be made by the National Election Supervisor overseeing the foundation’s election process.
If a determination is made that a member is not in good standing, the individual in question must be notified 15 days prior to the determination taking effect. Notice required under this section may be given by any method reasonably calculated to provide actual notice. Any notice given by mail must be given by first-class or registered mail sent to the last address of the member shown in the foundation’s records. The right to request a hearing and procedure for requesting it shall be included in the notice.
Discussion: It does not seem to be under dispute that Robert Gartner has been banned from station KPFT’s premises due to threatening behavior or creating an unsafe environment for others. As the national election supervisor, we acknowledge that we have been given notice and that multiple foundation members have identified Mr. Gartner as an individual whose good standing has been questioned per these restrictions. The national election supervisor has been asked to issue an initial determination that the member is not in good standing.
We understand the request, but in order to issue such a determination, we will need the following.
Sufficient documentation to establish the threatening behavior and creation of an unsafe environment cited in the PNB policy. To date we have received the text of emails, and while the email texts provided do provide some evidence of threatening behavior, we believe such a determination requires some documentation of non-cyber activities.
The national election supervisor has some concerns about a temporary independent contractor acting to strip an individual of their membership (should that be the determination), so we would like written confirmation that this six year old policy remains in effect by either Pacifica’s corporate counsel or the current executive director and authorizing the NES to make the requested determination.
Ruling: Held, pending further documentation.