Head of Edmonton centre for francophone newcomers removed from position

A man alleged to have sent inappropriate sexual messages to an employee and disrespecting employees while the head of an Edmonton-based centre that assists French-speaking newcomers is no longer employed by the organization.

Since 2003, Georges Bahaya, a prominent figure in Edmonton’s francophone community, has headed the Centre d’accueil et d’établissement du nord de l’Alberta (CAE), which offers support and services to French speakers who have recently moved to northern Alberta.

Six people have accused him of using his position to engage in inappropriate behaviour.

No legal action has been taken and no formal complaints have been made by the people making the allegations, but the CAE says it is conducting an independent investigation.

Both the CAE and Bahaya have indicated to Radio-Canada that they would not comment on the allegations made until after that independent investigation has concluded.

In a July 8 letter sent to the centre’s partners, the president of the CAE, Paul Dubé, wrote in French that Bahaya’s removal was not due to misconduct. Instead, the decision was made for the good of the organization, Dubé said.

He criticized a Radio-Canada investigation into the allegations against Bahaya, and reiterated that he feels Bahaya and the CAE have an excellent reputation.



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Sherwood Park

Sherwood Park is a large hamlet in Alberta, Canada within Strathcona County that is recognized as an urban service area.[7] It is located adjacent to the City of Edmonton’s eastern boundary,[8] generally south of Highway 16 (Yellowhead Trail), west of Highway 21 and north of Highway 630 (Wye Road).[9] Other portions of Sherwood Park extend beyond Yellowhead Trail and Wye Road, while Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) separates Refinery Row to the west from the balance of the hamlet to the east.[9]

Sherwood Park was established in 1955 on farmland of the Smeltzer family, east of Edmonton. With a population of 70,618 in 2016,[6] Sherwood Park has enough people to be Alberta’s seventh largest city, but technically retains the status of a hamlet. The Government of Alberta recognizes the Sherwood Park Urban Service Area as equivalent to a city.

History

Sherwood Park, originally named Campbelltown, was founded by John Hook Campbell and John Mitchell in 1953 when the Municipal District of Strathcona No. 83 approved their proposed development of a bedroom community east of Edmonton. The first homes within the community were marketed to the public in 1955. Canada Post intervened on the name of Campbelltown due to the existence of several other communities in Canada within the same name, so the community’s name was changed to Sherwood Park in 1956.
Geography

The Sherwood Park Urban Service Area is located in the Edmonton Capital Region along the western edge of central Strathcona County adjacent to the City of Edmonton.[8] The majority of the community is bound by Highway 16 (Yellowhead Highway) to the north, Highway 21 to the east, Highway 630 (Wye Road) to the south, and Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) to the west. The Refinery Row portion of Sherwood Park is located across Anthony Henday Drive to the west, between Sherwood Park Freeway and Highway 16. Numerous developments fronting the south side of Wye Road, including Wye Gardens, Wye Crossing, Salisbury Village and the Estates of Sherwood Park, are also within the community. Lands north of Highway 16 and south of Township Road 534/Oldman Creek between Range Road 232 (Sherwood Drive) to the west and Highway 21 to the east are also within the Sherwood Park urban service area.

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