Well-being scammer

Sounds like “Jessica” Yaniv without the “trans” aspect.

An Ottawa charity focused on the well-being of Black, Indigenous and LGBTQ youth is in disarray after staff quit and speakers pulled out of a recent conference because they believe the group’s leader has multiple aliases and a history of taking her enemies to court.

That description is oddly vague. What does it mean for a charity to be “focused on the well-being” of anyone? I wonder if there’s any connection between the vagueness of the description and the alleged multiplicity of its leader’s aliases.

Maxine Adwella is known as the head of the National Collaboration for Youth Mental Health (NCYMH), which, according to its website, has spent nearly 20 years advocating for racially and culturally specific mental health services for young people.

That’s more specific, but not a lot clearer. Racially specific mental health services? Sounds kind of…racist.

However, a recent court judgment concluded that a woman named Maxine Adwella is actually an alias used by Althea Reyes, a woman with a criminal past who was declared a vexatious litigant in 2017 for repeatedly launching civil proceedings to “harass her foes,” as the judge put it.

A CBC News investigation of Reyes reveals a remarkable backstory that’s led young staff and volunteers to walk away from NCYMH. Some allege they’ve been subjected to smear campaigns and threatened with legal action for speaking out against the charity and its leader.

So much for anybody’s well-being.

One Response to “Well-being scammer”