Essex Residents Raise $2K to Cover Suspended Wages for Councillor

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Supports of Essex Town Councillor Sherry Bondy have stepped up to make up lost wages due to a recommendation from the integrity commissioner.

Council voted 4-2 in favour of upholding the decision to dock her pay for 30-days of last week.

Integrity Commissioner Robert Swayze ruled Bondy violated the town's code of conduct by harassing employees of the municipality at E.L.K. Energy Inc. 

Justin Gagnon disagreed with the decision and says Bondy's criticism of the utility is justified.

He set up a GoFundMe campaign to recoup $1,500 in wages that has pulled in close to $2,000 as of Friday night.

Swayze made it clear Bondy couldn't receive the money, but Gagnon says he's already made his point.

"Her supporters came out in droves and we met our goal within 48-hours," he says. "Money talks so it's keeping the conversation going because this isn't going away."

Gagnon knew he wasn't alone, but he still didn't expect people to respond so quickly.

"I honestly didn't think we'd raise the money, maybe a couple hundred bucks would come in and we'd all be talking about it," he says. "When I found out he said she couldn't have it, I mean, it makes sense."

Swayze also interpreted a meme Bondy posted on social media - depicting a cartoon character with a lightbulb for head being led to the gallows - as a threat towards E.L.K. staff. 

Bondy argued the meme was a representation of her own persecution.

She tells AM800 News that she plans to donate the money to a local charity and is taking recommendations via her website.