Legion supports federal standing committee on Status of Women recommendations

OTTAWA, June 18, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The Royal Canadian Legion endorses recommendations in a new report by the House of Commons Standing Committee on the Status of Women (FEWO), which dealt with sexual misconduct in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF).

“We fully support the recommendations in this document,” says Thomas D. Irvine, CD, Dominion President. “Unfortunately, reports of sexual misconduct within the military are neither new nor rare and these recommendations need to be implemented now.”

The latest FEWO recommendations focus on what must be done to provide a safe and inclusive CAF workplace so that women’s and men’s contributions are valued equally.

Specific recommendations include actions to:

  • have the Government of Canada establish a fully independent Office of the Inspector General of the Canadian Armed Forces and the Department of National Defence;
  • accelerate culture change and support the elimination of sexual misconduct in the CAF so that all members benefit from a working environment that is safe and inclusive;
  • increase women’s representation and retention;
  • ensure the reporting and investigation of sexual misconduct allegations are handled through an independent reporting structure that includes RCMP Investigators and a panel of retired military judges; and
  • provide better protections and support for those personally affected by misconduct, including better training for those dealing with survivors, eliminating the fear of reprisals and adding sexual trauma to the list of operational injuries.

“Enough with reports sitting on shelves, it’s time to take action,” says Captain (N) (retired) Andrea Siew, Chair, Dominion Command Defence and Security Committee. She sums up the Legion’s view when she says, “these recommendations will go a long way towards ending unacceptable behaviour and ensuring a safe and harm-free environment for the women and men who serve in the CAF.”

About The Royal Canadian Legion

Founded in 1925, the Legion is Canada’s largest Veteran support and community service organization. We are a non-profit organization with a national reach across Canada as well as branches in the U.S. and Europe. With close to 250,000 members, many of whom volunteer an extraordinary amount of time to their branches, our strength is in our numbers.

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