September 8, 2000

Press Release

U of T and Kin-Yip Chun Reach Agreement

The University of Toronto and former research associate Kin-Yip Chun have reached an agreement that will enable Chun to return to his research in seismology in the university's physics department. The resolution ends more than six years of conflict over Chun's allegation of racial discrimination by the university.

The agreement follows the July 24 decision by the Ontario Human Rights Commission not to refer Chun's complaint to a board of inquiry. The decision meant that the commission found no sufficient factual basis to support Chun's claim.

According to the agreement, Chun will hold the title of research scientist and associate professor (non-tenure stream). This academic designation means that Chun's principal duties will be research, with the possibility of graduate student supervision under normal university policy.

In a joint statement that accompanied the agreement, the two parties "express regret at the harm done to all those involved in this protracted dispute. They are pleased that the dispute has been resolved, including all outstanding litigation, and that a solution has been found that is consistent with the University of Toronto's policies."

"The university is pleased that we have found resolution to a long-standing and difficult situation for the University of Toronto, the physics department and Dr. Chun," says U of T President Robert Birgeneau. "Throughout this dispute we were committed to finding a solution that is consistent with our policies on academic appointments and would enable Dr. Chun to resume his research. We welcome him back to the university community."

Chun will resume his work with the university this fall. As part of the financial elements of the agreement, he will receive start-up funds for his research. Though not a requirement of Chun's research position, when his research program is established he may be involved in supervision or teaching. He will also be able to apply for tenure-stream positions and will be subject to annual review as are all faculty members and research staff of the university.


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