Statement from Mennonite Central Committee

June 21, 2024 | News

The following statement was provided to Canadian Mennonite by Laura Kalmar, Director of Marketing and Communications, Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Canada

May 14, 2024

(MCC posted a subsequent statement online on June 18, 2024.) 


We are aware of the grievance submitted by John Clarke and Anicka Fast, former Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) representatives for Burkina Faso, related to the process of their termination of employment from MCC, which occurred on August 25, 2023. We take the complaint seriously and are seeking a good and just outcome for all involved, knowing that any type of conflict brings significant pain. 


We are grateful for John and Anicka’s desire for mediation. While we had hoped to engage in mediation conducted by the Québec Workplace Health, Safety and Equity Standards Board, this was not possible. We look forward to participating in a mediation process with the parties involved in the future. 


MCC is also currently conducting a third-party investigation into the complaints raised by John and Anicka. This is standard HR procedure in response to these types of grievances and will help us best respond. It will also allow us to continue to monitor and evaluate MCC’s processes and policies, ensuring the ongoing health and safety of all MCC staff. In all areas, MCC endeavors to be a learning and growing organization.


Conflict, by nature, reflects differing perceptions of what occurred. We recognize that MCC may hold a different view of the circumstances outlined by John and Anicka. We are grateful there are processes to help us resolve these differences and we will work diligently to achieve the best possible outcome for everyone involved. 


Out of respect for all parties involved and recognizing that the complaint has moved to the level of litigation, we will not seek to engage the conflict in a public forum. 


MCC takes all reports of harm seriously. Through MCC’s Speak Up service, anyone who is connected with MCC or the partners and programs we support can report an abuse or complaint. All reports are confidential and handled by a third-party. Concerns may include a violation of ethical or professional standards, misconduct, or unfair or inappropriate management of resources.


MCC also takes staff safety and health seriously. Under the leadership of MCC’s international program safety and security specialist, MCC diligently monitors the contexts in which staff work. MCC is committed to maintaining rigorous staff security policies and procedures, recognizing the risks and ongoing volatility inherent in many regions where MCC works. MCC seeks to ensure the physical and mental health of all staff and partners, making it our highest priority. 


Again, MCC is committed to holding this entire process prayerfully and with care, recognizing that conflict brings pain to all involved.

Share this page: Twitter Instagram

Add new comment

Canadian Mennonite invites comments and encourages constructive discussion about our content. Actual full names (first and last) are required. Comments are moderated and may be edited. They will not appear online until approved and will be posted during business hours. Some comments may be reproduced in print.