MV Councillor subject of complaint after outburst

Councillor Shelley Maika (above) has found herself in hot water after a formal complaint was lodged by a local resident who claimed Maika verbally assaulted her on May 2 at the Township office.

According to Christine Darbyson, Maika burst into a private meeting between Darbyson and Acting Interim Treasurer Ross Jeffrey, screaming obscenities and physically intimidating Darbyson by pushing the office door towards her as she tried to close it. When asked what might have motivated Maika to attack her this way, Darbyson said that it related to a $25 refund requested by her community group on a facility rental. Her meeting with Jeffrey was about those arrangements.

While the attack was happening, Jeffrey hurried through another door to find Mayor Kim Love. Darbyson says that the Mayor, who was in the next office, as well as all members of staff who were in the building, would have heard the commotion because Maika was yelling loudly, apparently out of control.

After Maika had left, Darbyson, who said she was extremely shocked and distraught, left Jeffrey’s office to find both Love and Jeffrey in the corridor. She says she asked Love, “Did you see that?” and Love responded, “Yes, I know.” She said that Love and Jeffrey invited her to stay while they dealt with the refund application, but Darbyson refused, saying, “Look at my hands; I have to leave.” This is because she says it was noticeable that she was visibly shaking.

Darbyson later learned that after having left Jeffrey’s office, Maika spoke to a member of the public who had witnessed the incident. According to this witness, whose identity has been supplied to the Mayor, Maika apologized that he had to see what had just taken place. The witness says that Maika then added that “she was tired of [her] free loading off the community” and that Darbyson was “a hippy that home schools [her] children and she was sick of [her] mooching off the community.” He also said, “I was very shocked to hear that kind of language from a person who is a representative of a community.”

When contacted by the Current, Darbyson said,

It’s a really small town. Someone going around talking about me like this could cause serious damage. The Councillor’s language was outrageous. We have many people who home school their children for various reasons in this community and this is a direct attack on all of us. Characterizing me as a “moocher” is completely absurd. This incident raises serious questions about whether she is fit to hold a public office.

Darbyson said she complained to the Mayor who declined to take any action herself in respect of the complaint. She has not received an apology from Maika or from anyone on behalf of the Township.

The Current reached out to both Love and Maika for comment, but neither has responded.


  1. Pingback: Integrity Commissioner leaves more questions than answers in Darbyson/Maika ruling | Madawaska Valley Current

  2. Pingback: MV Mayor claims she has no role in the disciplining of council members – Madawaska Valley Current


    What is it about a bully that turns others around him/her into jelly!We have seen Trump in action in the USA.Now we can see similar behaviour right here in MValley with Maika. Why isn’t the mayor showing the leadership she claims to provide (Mar.21 Council Mtg).

  4. Margaret Haden-Pawlowski

    Shelly you are elected to represent the taxpayers. Including taxpayer Christine Darbyson and people who homeschool and those who don’t. This is so unprofessional and I have to say this is not the first time you have been unprofessional. I am disappointed in the lack of leadership from kim. The mayor shouldn’t stand by while a member if her council does this to a taxpayer. Another case for the ethics commissioner? Come on guys get your act together. We teach our kids not to be bullies how about you lead by example.

  5. Nels Boehme

    Yes, Yes. Time for a change Bernice says.
    I have, on several occasions, attempted to deal with the elected officials of our Township and found it just impossible to breach their collective attitude, and having the hammer slammed down on me while so attempting to make a valid point.
    I, as with so many other tax payers am fed up with the idiotic and unacceptable attitude of such a “small-town”
    group who seem to be self-serving and not at all really interested in the Township as a whole. Oh yes, they really have done some good things I do tell but by and large they seem to have the feeling that “WE OWN THE TOWNSHIP” and do not really feel that they should be doing what the people wish, and not just what THEY wish! They are, after all, elected to carry out the business of the Township as a whole and not just what they feel as individuals!
    Better luck with a new bunch I think.

  6. Heather Poliquin

    I went to the Municipal Office this morning to register my complaint. Ms Maika is still working and no action has yet been taken. I was given a complaint form to complete. I would suggest that we all do this to ensure that this incident is dealt with.

    • Christine Darbyson

      To all of you who have commented in support … I don’t even know what to say… but I am overwhelmed with a feeling of gratitude. Thank you so much for your support … and I think it is much better and significant if the community joins together with this …Bravo

  7. This is a totally unprofessional, unethical and childish action and behavior of the councilor Maika. We need a new council, people for the people and for the community. I feel so sad for the victim in this incident, Thank god for the Current. I would really hope that she resigns and makes a formal apology. There is no room for bullying in our community. Let’s elect a new council and get rid of the bullies. #Nomorebullies

  8. Jenny Baklinski

    As tax paying homeschoolers, and with three of our children also attending George Vanier, we are very concerned about the language that the counsellor chose to use. This is not professional to ever group an education choice into a personal attack, not to mention the fact that a personal attack is entirely unprofessional! I would hope that this discriminatory behaviour is taken with all seriousness by our current sitting Township Council, and the resulting resignation, with sincere apologies are immediate and forthcoming.

  9. Yvette Boudreau-Smith

    This is unacceptable, embarrassing behaviour. The victim is a person who is voluntarily doing something that benefits the community, not to mention a taxpayer. I would also like to know why the mayor did not try to stop this disgraceful, bullying behaviour whilst it was happening or even assure Christine that this situation was going to be dealt with immediately and effectively. Do we not teach our children how wrong it is to be a bully or to stand aside while somebody is being victimized? How is it acceptable from the ‘leaders’ of our community?
    I’m glad the Current is able to bring these issues to light, otherwise we may not even know what going on in our own municipal offices. Which is, I am sure how they would prefer it.

  10. Liam Gansterer

    This is absolutely appalling behavior to see from anyone, especially so from a representative of the community. If she has any respect for the community, the position she holds or herself she will resign immediately. This abusive behavior is not an isolated incident and if we see a resignation I would expect the disfunction within the township to rapidly evaporate.

  11. Don Webb

    Over 25 bucks?! Really? What is the cost of her tantrum up to date in staff time, in-camera meetings, and real dollars. Did MV township have to consult with the townships legal council over this, if so – how much did that cost. Obviously this is what Maika thinks of taxpayers who aren’t like her. So why would the mayor or anyone else want Shelly negotiating for the train station on the communities behalf. Is it any wonder the talks ended in failure.

  12. David Goulet

    Here’s what I’d like to see happen. I’d like for Shelley to apologize for her outburst, to both Darbyson and the office staff, acknowledging that it was wrong. I’d like that apology to be accepted. Let’s try and resolve this like family, not legal opponents. I’d like to hear that Shelley has decided to not run for reelection, acknowledging that the stress of this very demanding role has taken a toll and it’s time to step away and recharge the batteries. There is a growing toxicity in the municipality – taking on a life of its own. The “us versus them” mentality in the area needs to be gone. Division cripples small municipalities and leaves them uncompetitive. The municipality needs bridge makers, not wall builders. We have to ask ourselves, “Which am I going to be?”

    • Lynne Yantha

      That’s excellent! Well said. Furthermore, personal agendas should be kept out of the community leadership. I highly suspect there is too much of that. By personal experience….

  13. Heather Poliquin

    And so, what action will be taken on this. Obviously Councillor Maika should not and is not the kind of representative we need or want. Charges should be brought against her and the Mayor should remove her in the interim.

  14. sylvia anne hinrichsen

    I was a home schooling hippie and back-to -the-land person and I have been here about 44 years…hard working and not mooching…and yes I find the comments made regarding that to be highly offensive…but it made sense to me now why no art gallery at the station…most of the artists would have been called hippies and truly. most were…so I guess the artists are probably also seen as moochers…

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