Thursday, August 16, 2007

Is corporate responsibility an oxymoron?

Generally, most days I see something truly cringe worthy from our politicians or captains of industry but manage to keep whichever meal I've had down and proceed with life. Today, I was struck by an article from the Chief at a privately owned house building agency. For more than a year, this agency has undertaken a mammoth high rise, located at the entrance to St. James. An attempt to "gentrify" the neighbourhood if you will. Not that there was anything wrong with it to begin with but that's another story.

The Chief was sitting in his fifth floor office at his shopping mall, a grungy place with awful bathrooms I might add, ruminating on the cost of building the said behemoth, how much the price had gone up on materials, incidentally raising the price of the apartments it contained. I sympapthise, it can't be nice to be out millions of dollars. But this is not what stuck in my craw.

His complaint was that the construction that was taking place across the road from his office at a site, owned by a large trade union, did not have to toe the same line his company did. Let me give you the context, he was upset that he had to keep the noise level down at his site, located in an OLD RESIDENTIAL AREA, wash the dirt and dust generated from the trucks going in and out off the road. Now excuse me, many of the residents have lived there for a long time. Several are senior citizens whose families have been there since World War II. Do they have less rights than you because of the cost of your high-rise?

Over the last year, if you lived in that part of Woodbrook you put up with piles being driven in, orignally round the clock until someone got a politician to listen to them. They've had dust, traffic, trucks and a lot of other stuff too. Actually, the pile driving caused the wall separating the site from Pizza Hut to collapse, something which the Construction company has dutifully ignored. But this is not my issue.

No Mr. Chief, it is not one rule for you and another for others. Just because your neighbours across the Long Circular Road don't take care of their grot in the road, does not make them right. It means that they have no sense of social responsibility. Something you seem to have a problem with too since you admit that that your company only complied because of the complaints from neighbours instead of doing the right thing in the first place. I guess you would happily have continued with your bad behaviour otherwise.

So be a man, suck it up and say, I am taking corporate responsibility for MY project and maybe your neighbours will follow suit. If not, you have the same right as a citizen to let your voice be heard.

1 comment:

safespaces said...

I cannot wait to read what you'll have to say about the upcoming political advertising campaigns.
From you know who (not Voldermort)