December 13th, 2021
Service men and women deserve more than an apology: NDP
The NDP’s Critic for Defence, Lindsay Mathyssen, made the following statement:
"Women and men in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), civilians at the Department of National Defence and veterans, have been subjected to a toxic culture where sexual misconduct has been pervasive for decades. Successive governments have ignored their calls to address it and denied them justice.
Service men and women deserve an apology from this Liberal government for failing to take concrete steps to keep them safe at work and allowing everyone to serve equally. But an apology alone doesn't make up for six years of inaction. Sympathy and words won’t solve the pervasive problems if they aren’t backed up with real, urgent action.
It seems that every week the media reports more stories of women whose accusations of sexual misconduct or assault weren’t taken seriously by the CAF or the Liberal government who oversees it. In response, the Liberals say they’re working hard to address the issue, when in reality, they haven’t even implemented the recommendations in the Deschamps report from six years ago.
After decades of being dismissed and ignored, members of the Armed Forces don’t trust that their allegations will be taken seriously. How can they when the government has protected powerful men at the top of the CAF and allowed this problematic culture to continue for so long?
This government has got to prove they're going to do better. It is beyond time that this so called 'feminist' Prime Minister and his government moved beyond words and finally make sure everyone can serve equally."