Thorneloe University Launches Court Action to Block Laurentian University's Attempt to Terminate 60-Year-Old Federation Agreement

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SUDBURY, ON, April 15, 2021 /CNW/ - On Thursday, April 15, 2021, Thorneloe University has filed a motion in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice requesting a court order to stop Laurentian University's attempt to terminate the Federation Agreement between Thorneloe and Laurentian that was jointly entered into when the institutions were established over 60 years ago. A copy of the motion record is here.

Thorneloe University Logo (CNW Group/Thorneloe University)
Thorneloe University Logo (CNW Group/Thorneloe University)

The motion seeks the Court to confirm that the 1962 Federation Agreement, which was intended to permanently federate Thorneloe and Laurentian and have them operate as one university to benefit all students, cannot be unilaterally terminated by Laurentian, despite Laurentian's erroneous comments to the contrary.

On April 1, 2021, Laurentian sent Thorneloe a "Notice of its intention to disclaim or resiliate" the Federation Agreement with Thorneloe, effective May 1, 2021.

Thorneloe filed an objection to Laurentian's disclaimer with the Court under section 32 of the CCAA, which will engage the court to decide the validity of the disclaimer.

John Gibaut, the President of Thorneloe, says, "In the wake of a week of program, course and job losses at Laurentian, Thorneloe's contribution to the students across the university is more urgent than ever. Laurentian cannot unilaterally terminate the historic federation agreements that originate from Thorneloe's and Laurentian's inception. This matter is now before the Court, and we expect Laurentian to abide by the valid agreements unless and until the Court orders otherwise. The wider community is watching."

Thorneloe states that terminating the agreement will not provide any material improvement to Laurentian's financial problems, which Thorneloe did not cause, yet would create more chaos for students and more job losses for faculty and staff. The tuition, grant dollars and other fees generated by Thorneloe largely cover all of Thorneloe's costs. Thorneloe has a total workforce of only 28 while Laurentian employs 1,751.

Thorneloe's lawyers will be scheduling a hearing for the motion in consultation with the Court.

About Thorneloe University

Thorneloe University is an interdisciplinary centre of teaching, learning and research in the humanities, the arts and theology that is fully integrated with Laurentian. Established in 1961 and a founding member of the Laurentian University federation, Thorneloe provides an accessible education fostering critical thinking in a student-focused environment, and has an award-winning chapel and contemporary student residence. For more information see www.thorneloe.ca/

SOURCE Thorneloe University

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