Surrey councillor calls for wider review of racism, sexism allegations at Cloverdale Rodeo

July 23, 2021

By Vancouver Sun |

A Surrey councillor is calling for a wider review after a human rights complaint was levelled against the Cloverdale Rodeo and Exhibition Association.

The complaint, filed last week at the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal, claims that a number of workers and volunteers experienced systemic racism and sexism at the popular annual rodeo.

It alleges that from 2014 to 2021, the association employed Michael MacSorley as general manager despite knowing of his racist views of South Asian people and his “ongoing egregious behaviour” toward female staff and volunteers.

The complaint also makes allegations against members of the association’s executive board of directors.

The association issued a short statement saying that it was surprised to receive the complaint and will study it with “vigour and respond accordingly.” MacSorley could not be reached.

Coun. Brenda Locke said that the allegations in the complaint were troubling, but added that she and other members of city council and Mayor Doug McCallum got an email Jan. 7 from a rodeo employee who had quit and had raised some of the allegations outlined in the complaint.

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