By Julianna Cummins
Two people were arrested at the CKLN offices on Sunday, March 1 when they had barricaded themselves into the radio station’s studios.
Former CKLN employees Paulette Hamilton and Daibhid James were arrested on Sunday morning, according to police witness Greg Duffle. Police could not comment on who was arrested.
“I think they’ve overstayed their welcome if that’s the welcome that we have on our property. I don’t like it, I don’t want it, and we don’t need it here,” said president Sheldon Levy about the seven police cars that showed up on the morning of March 1 to deal with the situation at CKLN.
Duffle, a CKLN volunteer radio show host, was witness to the arrests on March 1. Duffle said that at a board meeting on Feb. 27, it was decided that all access to the station would be removed for security purposes.
“The only way that you could get in was with a key, which was…held by only certain people,” said Duffle.
To replace regular programming, CKLN was playing shows from two weeks ago on automatic feed. Duffle realized on the morning of March 1 that his show was not playing when it was supposed to.
A security officer came with him to CKLN, at which point security realized that the entrance into the studios was barricaded by an object. After security called for backup, Duffle requested they call the police. The police were able to open the door enough for Duffle to see inside the barricaded studio.
“Then, all of a sudden, I see a person on the other side. And this person, I recognize, as Paulette Hamilton,” said Duffle.
Hamilton struggled as she was taken away by police to the point where they discussed using a taser, said Duffle.
“And then the next person was brought out (by police), and this person was Daibhid James,” said Duffle.
Mercedez Otway, curent chair of one of the CKLN boards, was alerted of the situation on Sunday morning and said that she also witnessed James and Hamilton being arrested by police.
On Feb. 24, all CKLN’s paid staff were laid off, including management. Otway said following this motion, the locks on CKLN’s offices were changed so that only board treasurer Peter Toh and herself would have master keys to the station, along with the Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) and Ryerson security.
In response to the changed locks, the CKLN station manager at the time, Sam Snapps, deleted the access cards of members of one of the fighting boards, said Otway. The access cards give members access to the station’s lobby and studios.
“Sam Snapps…informed us that he had locked us out because we had locked Tony and Mike out,” said Otway.
Police were later called on Feb. 27 to CKLN when Josie Miner, a former board member, refused to leave the station, according to Otway.
RSU vice-president finance Toby Whitfield said the fighting CKLN isn’t fulfilling its goal of “serving students.”
Levy suggested that students should seriously consider a referendum if they do not like what is coming from their campus radio station.
“If students of the university do not feel they are getting value for what they’re putting in, students of the university should have a say,” said Levy.