Dr Partis never raised the matter of his plan to deny tenure with me, but to the contrary assured me that he would act properly in all matters. Towards the end of 1992, however, Dr Partis attempted to involve myself and the union in discussion of a "pay out." Despite the fact that this would have provided an ideal time for full and fair counselling, he refused to discuss substantive matters of any kind, so his offer was ignored by myself and the union.
On 8 October, Dr Partis produced a three sentence recommendation regarding my tenurability, but he refused to tell me its nature, no less the grounds on which it had been based. My union forced him to provide me a copy of his recommendation. However, he refused to tell me, or the union, the grounds for his decision. I now know that his recommendation was written about a month before his first report justifying it. I was neither supplied this report or a discussion regarding it, nor was I then aware of its existence (it remains contested now).
I stress that those documents refused me as tenure reports written by Dr Partis and associated documents were never discussed with me at any time or in any manner. Dr Partis' sole comment to me regarding his decision was to "clarify" his recommendation by saying to me words to the effect that he had "not recommended denial of tenure", but instead "had not recommended" on the matter. He said the decision was solely in the hands of the Vice-Chancellor. His less than accurate clarification only served to increase my confusion regarding what was happening to me.
In early November a Committee was to meet to consider Dr Partis' recommendation, but the meeting was cancelled at the last minute. I now know that this occurred on the basis of advice given the university that the proposed grounds for denial of tenure would not stand up. A second report, again then unknown to me, was produced by Dr Partis, and negative evidence was solicited by him, specifically from persons who I believed wished to see me removed from the university for having made proper complaints about the conditions which existed in archaeology. None of this was discussed with me, nor did I have a chance to become aware of, no less reply to, anything in his second report.
I now know that a memorandum written by University's legal advisor in response to Dr Partis's inital recommendation of 2 November provided detailed and specific recommendations regarding the need to provide advice and counsel to me. This was not followed up, nor was a recommendation that I be provided with a letter summarising claims made against me for response. Handwritten annotations on this document indicates that the grounds for my dismissal yet to be finalised and a "redundancy" case was still being considered. Given that it appears the manner in which to be sacked had yet to be decided, it seems logical that I would not have been councelled on it at the time. This memorandum also noted that my non-acceptability to anthropology "should not be seen" as relevant to the denial of my tenure, but admitted how to "achieve" this goal would be "difficult."
A second memorandum produced by the same person, noted again that Dr Partis had been specifically instructed to include in his second report an accounting of any and all counselling given to me and their outcome. This information was conveyed to the Vice-Chancellor on 2 December.
Given that a copy of this second report by Dr Partis dated 23 November was "leaked" to me in 1993, I am able to state that nothing is mentioned regarding counselling in his second report (this points to the important data which can be contained in the refused documents). Nothing dealing with counselling had been included in his 2 November report either. I conclude that the omission of data regarding counselling, even after he had been specifically instructed on legal advice that such data must be provided, indicates a clear admission on the part of Dr Partis that no counselling regarding poor performance was ever given to me.
Other points were listed as necessary for Dr Partis to address in his second document. First he was told to justify his claim that I was guilty of unacceptable behaviour. No documentation was provided to justify this claim in the second report. He, however, did solicit non-specific, albeit negative statements against me from other members of the department, and he noted that he supported my exclusion from anthropology. He was instructed to provide a discussion accounting for the positive reviews of my performance. This was not done. He was instructed to account for Professor Oxnard's positive evaluation of 1991. I now know that this evaluation made clear reference to my vicitimisation in archaeology, and it was not discussed by him, nor was it apparently included with his report when given to the Wood Committee. Dr Partis, hence, was unable to follow instructions based on legal advice. Given that this advice was provided to deal with problems in his first report, I believe we can also conclude that the university's legal-industrial advisor had already judged that Dr Partis had been unable to support the claims made against me in his document of 2 November.
On 5 December 1992 I wrote to the Vice-Chancellor noting I had never been informed of any deficiency in my work during my probationary period and asked that my tenure be confirmed before the expiry of my extension (31 December). Had the Vice-Chancellor been aware of any counselling it seems to me that should would have contested my claim on this matter. I also formally requested, specifically citing natural justice, that if any allegations of unsatisfactory performance had been made about me then I must be allowed to reply to them. This letter to the Vice-Chancellor has disappeared from university files.
On 10 December 1992 the Vice-Chancellor replied, informing me a new committee was to meet in the near future. She assured me natural justice would be honoured. She did not accede to my requests regarding provision of documents or advice regarding negative judgments made of me. Instead, she extended my review period for an indefinite period of time. Again, no performance related reasons were provided or discussed with me. This document also is missing from university files but, like the one cited above, was earlier supplied by me to your Office.
In January 1993, my supervisor became Professor Williams, a physicist. He refused to speak to me, no less advise or counsel, saying that he did not want to "get involved," or words to that effect.
Also in mid-January 1993, shortly before the Wood Committee first met, I made the same request verbally to Professor Wood that I had made in writing to the Vice-Chancellor. Again, I was refused. He instructed me that I was not to have contact with any of the Committee's members. He also said that documents I considered exceedingly relevant, such as the "Bruce Committee's" review of archaeology, could not be considered because they were "confidential." This struck me as very odd, indeed.
Professor Wood proved himself totally unaware of matters as simple as my separation from my students, or my assignment to an office in the campus radio station. He made no claims regarding my performance, nor did we ever discuss issues relevant to non-procedural aspects of my tenure. To the contrary, he discouraged me from communicating with him at all, and I was never given the opportunity even to meet with him.
None of the members of the Wood Committee were in my academic field of expertise, nor even in a related field. As noted earlier, the academic members of the committee were persons I now know to have been the recipients of documents making false and harmful claims which had been hidden from me. And as mentioned earlier, the exceedingly long activities report which had been demanded of me by Dr Partis was never consulted by the committee which was created to judge my performance.
After the first meeting of the Committee, held in camera with the head of personnel and my union excluded, a series of written questions relating to my academic performance was sent me. I replied to these questions to the best of my abilities. Regarding the meeting, my union representative said that all of the discussion as heard by her before the committee went behind closed doors, led her and the head of personnel to believe that a recommendation for tenure would result. My union representative said both she and the head of personnel had been shocked when the committee returned with a recommendation to deny.
Following a second in-camera meeting the Committee reported that I satisfactorily answered all questions related to academic performance as put of me. Denial of tenure nevertheless was recommended, hence, it must be the case that the reasons for denial must have related to matters other than the academic ones to which I was asked to reply.
This final report recommending denial of tenure makes clear and repeated reference to material written by Dr Partis' allegations about me, but does not make their nature clear. Nevertheless, his vague charges of interpersonal problems are accepted. The clear reference here is to material I had requested but was neither allowed to know nor answer. I later wrote complaining about this to Professor Wood who had chaired the Committee and requesting information on any negative evidence used against me. I also complained that I had not been allowed to discuss my case with him. No reply was received.
I stress the fact I was never allowed to answer questions about my performance, nor to represent myself in any manner at the Committee meetings, nor at any other time. My union representative and the Head of Personnel were invited as "observers," but were excluded from substantive discussions. I now know it was written that both myself and my representatives were to be excluded from the committee meetings since our presence might "inhibit free discussion." Documents possibly relating to these in camera discussions have been refused.
On April 15th, I finished a long reply to the Wood Report which had been sent me on 2 March. My report, already supplied to you, concluded that due process and natural justice had been denied me, important data regarding my performance had suddently disappeard from university files, and that my academic record had been grossly misrepresented. The completion of this report was delayed because fo stress related medical problems, a condition that has continued to the present time.
No communication whatsoever, either in writing or verbally, regarding my reply and the claims I made in it was ever given me. Hence, no advice or counsel could have been provided me regarding whether my answers to the Wood committee's claims had been satisfactory or not, and if not, the reasons why. In this reply I was able to prove that, despite the harassment I had experienced, my performance, using comparative quantitative and qualitative measures, far exceeded the norm for persons Bin my field, both nationally and at UWA itself. I never received any reply of any kind to my reply to the Wood Committee report. A refused document may provide just such and evaluation and reply.
I met with the Vice-Chancellor on 20 May 1993. At this meeting she announced that she would not discuss any subject dealing with the Wood Committee report or my reply to it. The Vice-Chancellor also said would not discuss my academic performance. She claimed, I believe falsely, that I was not needed at the university because I was "unacceptable" to all other departments. We agreed I could speak to this issue. When I attempted to deliver my report, it was refused in writing. This document has also disappeared from university files.
The only topic the Vice-Chancellor wished to discuss was whether I was willing to accept a "pay-out." I held discussions as a matter of good faith, but felt I could not continue in the face of a statement by the university that if I accepted their pay-out they would announce my leaving in a manner that wouldNOTdo harm to my reputation. Knowing full well that I had done no wrong, I found that condition repulsive. A second offer to negotiate was refused by me after the university said it would not withdraw harmful statements already made regarding my personal life and academic abilities.