Respected CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corp.) Radio reporter Bob Keating was ticked off! Seems that Mr. Earl Hamilton, a health care activist, called Mr. Keating a government “toady” who was not to be trusted. Well sir, how would you like a box of chocolates smeared with raw chicken and dirt?
That’s just what reporter Keating sent to Mr. Hamilton. Keating blew the surprise, though, warning Mr. Hamilton about what he was about to receive. He then confessed to his employer, and got psychiatric help. And the ramifications? Should Keating have been fired? A labor arbitrator decided that a three-month suspension was appropriate. When the CBC appealed that, they won, with a three-member panel saying he should be fired. But then that was appealed, and the British Columbia Court of Appeal said that the chocolate surprise was not a firing offense.
Only one problem – Keating does not want his job back! (The case was pursued by his union, against his wishes.) He is now the manager of media and trade relations for Kootenay Rockies Tourism. Though he is happy with his new job, he has found the restrictions – staying 50 feet away from chocolate, raw chicken, and dirt – sometimes difficult to work around. [Okay – the restrictions are bogus.] In any event, said Keating, “I’ve moved on… I made a mistake. It cost me a career… I want to put it behind me.” Here’s hoping he has.