The Story of the Canadian Wilderness Guide Who Experienced Anti-Christian Discrimination is a Hoax (Kind of…) October 10, 2014

The Story of the Canadian Wilderness Guide Who Experienced Anti-Christian Discrimination is a Hoax (Kind of…)

Just the other day, I posted a story about a young river rafting guide,
Bethany Paquette, who applied for a job at Amaruk Wilderness Corp.… only to be rejected because she attended Trinity Western University, a Christian school in British Columbia known for its anti-gay theology.

Ms. Paquette.

I do not understand the purpose of your application considering you do not meet the minimum requirements that are clearly outlined on our web site.

Additionally, considering you were involved with Trinity Western University, I should mention that, unlike Trinity Western University, we embrace diversity, and the right of people to sleep with or marry whoever they want, and this is reflected within some of our staff and management. In addition, the Norse background of most of the guys at the management level means that we are not a Christian organization, and most of us actually see Christianity as having destroyed our culture, tradition, and way of life.

I wrote about how this was an actual case of religious discrimination against a Christian, since her beliefs, if they were aligned with the school’s, had no bearing on the job she was being hired to do. It’s not like she was going to treat gay customers any different from straight ones.

This week, CBC News took a closer look at the story and discovered there’s a lot more to this company than anyone knew. The unprofessionalism Paquette experienced is only a drop in the bucket when you look at what else the management has done:

Since Paquette’s complaint was reported, CBC News has heard from other applicants, including Lucie Clermont, who applied to Amaruk last year for a job listed as the executive assistant to the CEO, which promised a $120,000 salary and world travel.

Clermont’s application was met with a number of emails asking awkward questions — some of them sexual — followed by more that became insulting.

Sophie Waterman applied for the same job, but soon believed it sounded too good to be true. She withdrew her application after a friend in the tourism industry warned her Amaruk might not be all that it seems.

“When I cancelled the interview, I received about 15 emails in quick succession,” she says. “All pretending to be from different people involved with the company, and all very litigious, accusing me and my friend of slander. My feeling is that it’s all one person.”

Christopher Fragassi-Bjørnsen and Dwayne Kenwood -Bjørnsenare are listed as co-CEOs of Amaruk along with several other businesses, including Norealis, Spartic and Militis.

But the men do not live in Europe and they are not diplomats. And if Olaf Amundsen — the man who allegedly sent Paquette the offensive emails — is real, the picture of him on the company website is not. In fact, it’s an image grabbed from social media site Pinterest.


Two quick thoughts spring to mind:

  1. A company that has to lie this much, and turns potential employees into victims of a giant prank, isn’t worth working for or giving your money to — that is, if it even exists in the first place.
  2. It turns out the most blatant case of anti-Christian discrimination I’ve seen in a long time is a hoax (though it’s not Paquette’s fault).

It looks like Paquette dodged a bullet with the rejection letter. I’m not sure yet what this all means about the complaint she filed with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal.

(Thanks to everyone for the link)

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