NEWS
10/19/2015 20:16 EDT | Updated 10/19/2016 01:12 EDT

Journalist won't appeal lost decision in defamation suit against John Furlong

VANCOUVER — A freelance journalist who lost her defamation lawsuit against former Vancouver Olympics CEO John Furlong says she will not appeal the ruling.

Laura Robinson says she reached the decision after reflection and discussion with her family and in spite of advice from independent legal counsel who say the judge made errors in fact and law.

Robinson had accused Furlong of defaming her in public statements he made after she wrote a 2012 article that contained abuse allegations from First Nations students at a B.C. school where he taught more than four decades ago.

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Catherine Wedge released a searing judgment last month that found Furlong had a right to defend himself from Robinson's articles, which the judge called an "attack" on his character, conduct and credibility.

Robinson says continuing the court battle will not accomplish her original goal of listening to indigenous people and she is launching a website called justtrylistening.org as part of an ongoing effort to meet that objective.

She says the past three years have had a huge impact on her health, but she feels honoured to be trusted by First Nations and there is still a "chasm" between the reality of their lives and how non-Native people see them.

The Canadian Press