Stories continue to come in about the system FINALLY having to publicly acknowledge the abuses various agencies and official have been guilty of for a long time, always ignored, denied, evaded and accountability is coming.
Here are a couple more. The time is ripe to bring your complaints forward and have a far better chance than ever before to be heard and receive remedy.
The first story below continues on the explosion of the Bill Cosby complainants and other sexual assault cases leading up to and having had a positive effect in addressing sexual assault in the Canadian military…
The second story below is the 1st Canadian case where the B.C. child protection agency is liable for misfeasance…can you say it is about time!
PPCLI commander charged with sex-related offences against cadets
July 28, 2015 By Terry Pedwell, The Canadian Press | The Canadian Press
OTTAWA – The commander of one of the country’s most famous infantry battalions faces serious, sex-related charges, less than a week after the country’s new defence chief pledged to eradicate sexual misconduct in the military.
Lt.-Col. Mason Stalker of the 1st Battalion, Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry has been charged with 10 offences including sexual assault, sexual exploitation and breach of trust. The charges relate to a series of incidents involving one military cadet that are alleged to have occurred in Edmonton between 1998 and 2007.
“These are serious and significant charges under the Criminal Code of Canada,” said Lt-Col.Francis Bolduc, commanding officer of the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service.
“Regardless of a member’s rank and role in the Canadian Armed Forces, the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service works diligently and independently from the Canadian Armed Forces chain of command to protect individuals from those who violate the law.”
Last week, Gen. Jonathan Vance, the chief of defence staff, laid out changes to how the military handles sexual misconduct complaints.
In a letter sent to all members of the Canadian Forces, Vance likened the approach to a formal military operation, calling it Operation Honour.
“I lament the fact that there exist within our ranks those that would bully, degrade or assault others, especially another member of the CAF or a member of the defence team,” Vance wrote in his July 23 letter.
Vance’s pronouncements came after former Supreme Court justice Marie Deschamps issued a report that found sexual misconduct “endemic” in the military, and tolerated by the highest ranks.
Deschamps’ April report laid the blame on a pervasive macho culture in which the leadership tolerates abuse and leaves women fearful to report it.
But only two of her 10 recommendations for fighting the problem were accepted outright by then-chief of defence staff Gen. Tom Lawson.
When Vance took over as the top-ranked officer earlier this month, he changed the tone, saying he assumed responsibility for what he termed the “institutional failure” of the armed forces to address sexual misconduct.
Stalker, 40, is charged with three counts of sexual assault, four counts of sexual exploitation and one count each of sexual interference, invitation to sexual touching and breach of trust by a public officer.
He appeared in an Edmonton courtroom on Tuesday and was released on $2,500 bail under conditions that include staying away from places where children gather, having no contact with cadets younger than 18 and giving up his passport. His next court appearance is scheduled for Aug. 20.
Capt. Joanna Labonte, a military police spokeswoman, said a man — a former cadet — came forward in April to file a complaint.
A spokeswoman for Defence Minister Jason Kenney, in an emailed statement, called the allegations against Stalker “very disturbing.”
“Sexual assault and harassment of any kind have no place anywhere in the Canadian Armed Forces,” said press secretary Lauren Armstrong.
“This is now a matter for the courts, so further comment would be inappropriate.”
Stalker served in Afghanistan in 2006 and again from June 2010 until October 2011, according to his LinkedIn profile, which was removed from the website Tuesday shortly after the charges were announced.
He was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal in 2007 and 2012 for his efforts in Afghanistan.
“Responsible for operations in the most volatile and violent region of Afghanistan, he was instrumental to operational success and significantly contributed to defeating the insurgents.” reads the 2012 citation posted on the Governor General’s website.
“Lt.-Col. Stalker’s performance was of a high standard and brought honour to the Canadian Forces and to Canada.”
More recently, he was one of the officers in charge when the military was called out earlier this month to help fight wildfires in northern Saskatchewan.
Stalker graduated from the Royal Military College with an honours degree in 1997.
The military asks that anyone with information that may be related to the investigation contact the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service western region tip line at 1-877-233-6066.
It is about freaking time the ministry was held accountable ….
Ministry abused authority in case of B.C. father sexually abusing his children: judge
1st Canadian case where child protection agency is liable for misfeasance, says lawyer
A B.C. Supreme Court judge ruled the province’s child protection service abused its authority in a case involving the physical and sexual abuse of children, which ultimately allowed a father to molest his child while the toddler was in the ministry’s care.
In a scathing 341-page judgement released Tuesday, Justice Paul Walker labelled the failure as ‘egregious,’ negligent and a breach of duty and said some social workers showed a “reckless disregard for their obligation to protect children.”
The mother’s lawyer, Jack Hittrich, says the case could result in a payout of millions of dollars in damages and legal costs to the children and the mother.
He says the mother was valiantly trying to get the B.C. Ministry of Children and Family Development to acknowledge and act on evidence that the father had physically and sexually abused at least three of the couple’s four children.
The mother, who can only be identified as JP, was disbelieved and rebuffed and also wrongfully labelled as unstable by authorities, said Hittrich.
“This is the very first case in Canadian history where a mother has succeeded in holding a child protection agency liable for misfeasance in public office,” he said.
‘Baseless attempt to discredit mother’
Tuesday’s judgement flows from an earlier decision by Justice Walker in June 2012, which was part one of the case, and related to the mother’s bid to obtain permanent custody of her children.
At that time, Justice Walker ruled that there was sufficient evidence to conclude that three of the former couple’s children had been sexually and physically abused by their father and that a Vancouver police investigation into the case was flawed.
The couple separated about four years prior, in October 2009, when the father, called BG in the court documents, was charged with uttering death threats. He was eventually removed from the family home for assaulting JP and the couple’s eldest daughter.
Soon after, the mother became alarmed by evidence that at least three of her other children had been sexually abused by BG.
In December 2009 Justice Walker ordered that the father only be allowed supervised access to the children. But the ministry ignored that and seized the children from the mother after the father and his close friends made repeated calls raising concerns about her mental capacity.
The ministry then allowed the father to have unsupervised access to the children — which then allowed the father to sexually abuse the fourth and youngest child, Walker wrote in Tuesday’s judgement.
That child is still suffering as a result, said Hittrich. “Clearly she was sexually abused while in care, and but for the ministry’s actions that wouldn’t have happened.”
“When mom was frantically trying to convince the ministry that the sexual abuse allegations were real, they basically labelled her as crazy. And the more she protested, the more she was labelled as being crazy,” Hittrich told CBC.
“If someone actually gave me this as a script, a Hollywood script, I would probably say this is a very entertaining script but ultimately not very believable.”
In his 2012 ruling, Justice Walker deemed the father’s allegations “a baseless attempt to discredit her.”
He also said the investigating Vancouver police officer wrongly sided against the mother in determining there was no basis for the sexual abuse allegations. He added the officer appeared “enamoured” with the father.
In Tuesday’s ruling the judge found the province was negligent and breached its fiduciary duty to the mother and the children, and misfeasance was proven.
“I have determined that the director and certain ministry social workers acted well outside of their statutory mandate and the duty to protect children,” he wrote.
The wrongful conduct “ranges from intentional misconduct, bad faith, reckless disregard for their obligation to protect children … to unreasonably supporting the … the children’s father even if it meant he sexually abused them,” he wrote.
‘Herculean efforts’ of the mother
“If it were not for the Herculean efforts of [the mother], the children would now, through the fault of the director of children and families, be in the custody of their father who sexually and physically abused them,” Walker said.
Justice Walker found that because ministry employees had acted in bad faith, immunity from liability under the Child, Family and Community Service Act does not apply.
The judge found that ministry employee William Strickland misled the police and colleagues to make them believe that the mother was malicious and suffering from mental health issues, which led to her assertions being disregarded by authorities, including the Vancouver Police Department.
Just the same, the judge said that the failure to protect the children from harm is not attributed solely to a single employee. The ministry “had many opportunities to carry out a proper assessment and investigation of the reports of sexual abuse,” he wrote.
Ministry employees “approached the case … with a closed mind, having concluded at a very early stage, before the children were interviewed that there was no merit to the sexual abuse allegations, and that JP had fabricated them and had coached her children to make their disclosures,” he wrote.
The B.C. Ministry of Children and Family Development issued a statement Tuesday saying it was too early for it to respond.
“This is a very lengthy decision that we will need time to review. Once that review is completed we will consider next steps,” the ministry’s media relations manager Sheldon Johnson said in an email.