April 21st, 2024

Veterans pan move to end military investigation, prosecution of sexual misconduct

By The Canadian Press on March 22, 2024.

Veterans and advocates say ending the military's jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute sex crimes is the wrong move. A Canadian soldier takes part in an announcement at Garrison Petawawa in Petawawa, Ont., on Thursday, Oct. 19, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

OTTAWA – Veterans and advocates say ending the military’s jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute sex crimes is the wrong move.

Defence Minister Bill Blair has introduced changes to the National Defence Act based on a recommendation from former Supreme Court justice Louise Arbour.

Arbour had found Armed Forces members did not trust the military justice system to handle such cases.

But some veterans who experienced sexual misconduct say the civilian justice system is not any better equipped to deal with the problem.

Christine Wood, a former air force logistics officer, says victims should have a choice to proceed with either system.

Another veteran, Diane Rose, says the government is not listening to survivors and hasn’t solved the real problems.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 22, 2024.

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