In which AERC folks have an opportunity to fix things
It's not exactly being shouted from rooftops, but
the AERC Board is scheduled to meet this weekend.
On the agenda: discussion of the Dennis Summers case.
|Dennis and Sue Summers helped mark trail for ride management in April|
If you want to refresh your memory of posts on the topic from this blog, they are here:
Pertinent points that I think need to be, um, pointed out:
* This was a verbal disagreement between two adults. Most witnesses say that there was little or no physical contact between Dennis and the other guy. They yelled at each other. (In my world, that's called "using your words.")
* The grievances were not brought by Dennis or "the other guy" but rather, by third parties. Because that makes sense?
* Two guys argued. One guy got punished. The other guy was given first place. Because that makes sense?
* There have been accusations that members of the Protest and Grievance committee are biased against Dennis and for the other guy. At least one P&G member says that he is friends with the other guy, but he doesn't think that will influence him. Because THAT makes sense?
* The P&G committee is made of volunteers from membership. In past years, there was a member from each region. That is not true now. Because THAT makes sense?
* Dennis and Sue were "overwhelmed and awed" by the numerous compassionate (and passionate) letters of defense offered up by Pacific Northwest riders who know them, as well as by riders from other regions. These letters were not solicited by the Summers--we wrote them because we couldn't not write.
* The incident happened in January. The appeal has been pending since June. It's now late August. That's pretty much the majority of our season here in the Pacific Northwest. It has meant that many of the projects spearheaded by the Summers (including the blood machine AND an endurance ride) had to be scrapped or scrambled, thereby "punishing" our entire region. We can't help thinking -- maybe rightly, maybe not-- that folks were hoping we would shut up and go away.
Locally, that didn't go over well. This should not be surprising.
|"WE RIDE WITH DENNIS"|
* There was some push back from riders in our region. We wanted justice for our friend, and we wanted it promptly. That pretty much didn't happen.
* There were accusations that Dennis is a "hot shoe" and a "racer." I speak from experience: Dennis rides fast, but he doesn't ride dumb--and unlike other regions, PNER doesn't leap to condemn a rider in distress at an event.
* Whether he finishes first or third or fifteenth or fortieth, Dennis is always the first to offer a handshake and a beer to other riders...or whatever other help he is able to provide.
|Hana had a butt cramp at the finish line of Renegade 2015. |
Guess who was right there with an offer to massage and move it out?
* The Summers were told that they were banned from all contact with AERC events for a year AND that Dennis' finishes from January to June were expunged--effectively, an 18 month sentence. For yelling. The other guy, who was also yelling...oh, wait, we've been there before.
HERE ARE MY QUESTIONS FOR READERS:
* If you are an AERC member and you've read this far down the page, have you spoken to your regional representative about the issue? Their smiling faces and contact info can be found HERE.
* Are you interested in monitoring this meeting via Facetime or Skype? We have the right to do that, you know. Contact your regional rep. Call early and often. Call late, too. Remember, the meeting happens on Saturday!
* Do you think the P&G committee's original findings were one-sided?
* Do you think transparency has been lacking?
* Do you think that a person on the committee who is friends with a person named in the dispute should have recused himself to avoid the appearance of favoritism?
* Do you think some members of the Board have been less than professional in this matter?
* Do you think the timeliness with the issue has been lacking?
It's YOUR organization, folks.
Don't threaten your Board members, please. Instead, give them your thoughts.
Help AERC be better. There's not much time before the Board meets.
Call now! Operators are probably not standing by, but they probably want to listen to you anyhow.
That's what we elected them to do, remember?
|Let's get Dennis back where he belongs.|