A libel suit would «not be difficult to win,» given comments made by the agriculture minister after agronomist Louis Robert’s dismissal, the union says.
The union representing professionals employed by the Quebec government will take legal action to defend Louis Robert, the agronomist fired by the Agriculture Ministry in January after he denounced the influence of the pesticide industry in research.
The union recently received a legal opinion evaluating various means to defend the veteran civil servant and is expected to announce on Thursday how it will proceed.
Union president Richard Perron told the Presse Canadienne on Tuesday that a libel suit launched on Robert’s behalf would “not be difficult to win,” given comments made by Agriculture Minister André Lamontagne following the agronomist’s dismissal.
“There was unjustifiable damage done to a reputation and the minister even said he was following his intuition,” said Perron, a lawyer by training. “It’s not smart, trusting one’s intuition to say such things publicly regarding someone who has just been fired.”
The union is calling for Robert’s reinstatement, apologies from the government and compensation for the losses suffered by the employee. All of the opposition parties at the National Assembly have expressed their support for Robert.
A petition calling for Robert’s firing to be rescinded had by Tuesday garnered nearly 45,000 names. An English version of the petition is expected to be made public soon.