Mark Lemstra has a new job. He was previously “Senior Research Epidemiologist” for the Saskatoon Health Region but he is now “Director of Research” for the Saskatoon Tribal Council. Why is this interesting? Because all of a sudden, this story is front page news in Saskatoon.
Lemstra was let go from the health region on January 8th and started his new job on January 10th. Now he’s “protesting” his dismissal. Based on the article, he was unhappy with his job and they were unhappy with him. What’s to protest? Maybe the way he was dismissed? Sounds exactly like what happens in lots of businesses. Did I mention that he received about a year’s pay for severence? What’s to protest?
The health region probably had grounds to dismiss him last fall when his big report on health disparities in Saskatoon was leaked to the media before the official release. Speaking of that report, I just heard Judy Junor call it “damning” (I’m watching CTV) but the report is mostly reprints of previously published studies and letters of support. I read parts of the report (it’s rather dense) and I remember lists of recommendations which weren’t necessarily evidence-based. It really read more like propaganda from an NGO instead of a research report from a health region. Lemstra himself acknowledges his bias in the newspaper article.
I just don’t get this sudden appearance in the press. Is a lawsuit pending? It’s hard to argue that one was damaged by a job dismissal which included severence AND was quickly followed by another job. Hmmm … I wonder if that other job was plan B? Lemstra is even still publishing results of research he conducted under the auspices of the health region so they don’t seem to be inhibiting him in that way.