Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Flyer photo flap

A Filipino-Canadian man who complained that photographs of his daughter and niece were used in an NPA campaign flyer without permission appears to have backed off a lawsuit threat. But he is complaining to the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner and the civic elections office. He has also issued a list of demands.

Clifford Belgica wants the NPA campaign to pay for full-page apology advertisements in five major newspapers, donate a mutually agreed sum on behalf of the children to B.C. Children's Hospital and perform community service volunteer hours to an adolescent psychiatric unit.

Here is the full complaint, emailed to media early Nov. 16 from Belgica, whose complaint was publicized by the Coalition of Progressive Electors in a Nov. 13 news release.



RE : Vancouver NPA Party

Attention : Peter Armstrong, Party Chairperson
Suzanne Anton, Mayoral Candidate


This is to formally inform the Vancouver NPA and Ms. Anton that a formal complaint had been forwarded to the Office of the Information and Privacy Comissioner for British Columbia as well as Elections Vancouver [File #237386].

This is with regards to the blatant violation of the rights of the my child [Ella Belgica] and her cousin [Gabrielle Mojica] by the NPA and Ms. Anton; done by using their photo image taken in a public event that should have been for posterity purposes; but however the party decided to use as a leverage to show their electorate of their association and "concern" towards the minorities and the multicultural fabric of Vancouver if only to be able to sway votes for party and Ms. Anton's favour without the due process of obtaining consent.

We would also like to inform you that we were at the parade representing a 20 year old duly registered society protected under the BC societies' act upon which the organization is mandated to remain apolitical and not allowed by it's constitution and by-laws not to wear any political color. BIBAK organization of British Columbia is a conglomeration of British Columbians who owe their ancestry and heritage to the indigenous people called Igorots that inhibit the Cordillera mountain ranges in the Northern Philippines hence the traditional garbs being worn by the children during the parade.

This is also to inform you formally that a brief call of no more than 2 minutes to me from Ms. Anton detailing that it was a mistake by a junior staff and the kids are cute anyways ended up providing "insult to injury" specially the media releases sent out by your team right after to say that an "apology" had been made and using media to do the work for you for free . We have given ample time to when a family member had informed your party who were then distributing the materials to withraw up until we had issued our first media release on sunday [Nov 14, 2011] but you only contacted me after the release.

On Ms. Anton's admission, she also stated that the pictures were also used in platform broc
We are ready to move forward with our lives that had suddenly spiralled out of a peaceful existence with a wishful thought of the party making right and setting the wrong that had been done once and for all. As such, in the complaint sent out we wish for the following outcome:

[1] A full page paid party ad with 5 major newspapers [including the Vancouver Sun and The Province] of a full apology and full description of the violation as well as concrete measures that the party had and will do to prevent this from happening again [not a haphazard "apology" via free press]; content to be agreed upon by us prior to release.
[2] A mutually agreed compensation for the incident to include a donation on behalf of both child to BC Children's Hospital
[3] A mutually agreed community service volunteer hours on one of the adolescent psychiatric units in the GVR
[4] Any other outcome that Gabrielle's family has asked in their formal complaint also lodged with the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner.

Thank you and best regards to the upcoming elections,

Clifford P. Belgica

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