I've always thought
the RCMP were a great force but since coming to Canada I have to say
I've changed my mind somewhat.
A program on CBC's Fifth Estate
followed 4 women who complained about sexual assault by a fellow
officer. Other complaints have been made by women in the force
against male colleagues. I also keep reading about other incidents
which really don't show the force in the best light. From what
I can see these incidents are all covered up by some very senior
One other example was a
Polish man who got upset about being detained at one of Canada's
airports and as I understand it 5 RCMP offices taizered the man from
which assault he died. In many respects this would be
considered bullying and using excessive force.
Other stories come out from time to
time which really don't show the force in the best light and this
goes right up to the very top of the force. These incidents are
usually covered up by senior officers.
In fact there are
now so many stories going the rounds that you really have to wonder
what has happened to the force that had such good standing in
The problem here is
that all RCMP officers get tainted with the same brush and it would
seem the forces credibility is probably at its lowest point ever in
Having just watched the Fifth Estate
program again I felt compelled to make this note as I also listened
to what the Top ranking officer in the force had to say and I have
to say I was not at all impressed with his comments about it. I
would also have no faith in him resolving the very serious issues
that are evident within the force.
On July 31st 2012 I also learned that
there is now a class action law suite by some 200 female members of
the RCMP about their treatment by male officers.
Mounties reach multi-million sexual
6 October 2016 from BBC News.
The Canadian Mounties have reached a multi-million dollar settlement
agreement with female members and civilian staff of the national
police force after decades of workplace gender and sexual
discrimination, bullying and harassment.
The settlement agreement, expected to reach CA$100m ($76m/£59m) in
compensation, still needs federal court approval.
On Thursday, Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Commissioner Bob
Paulson apologised to the women affected by what he called "shameful
conduct" and the force's failure in allowing a culture of harassment
to fester within the RCMP.
"Some of these women left the RCMP, heartbroken, disillusioned and
angry. Others stayed and were forced to find ways to cope with this
inexcusable condition since they did not see an organisation that
was willing to change," a tearful Mr Paulson said.
The two class-action lawsuits that led to the settlement agreement
were filed by former Mounties Janet Merlo, who joined the RCMP in
1991, and Linda Gillis Davidson, who joined in 1985.
Ms Merlo, who says she lived with 20 years of sexual comments.
pranks and derogatory remarks inflicted by "a minority, but a potent
minority" of male colleagues, called Thursday's apology and
settlement a "turning point for the RCMP".
"I have total faith that this is the beginning of a new era,
hopefully a better era," she said.
All told, the dual class-actions represent some 500 plaintiffs.
Federal officials are expecting up to 1,000 women who worked in the
RCMP between 1974 and when the settlement receives court approval to
seek claims under the agreement.
Allegations of sexual harassment and a toxic work environment have
been dogging the RCMP for years after a high-profile Mountie first
went public with her claims in 2011.
Corporal Catherine Galliford, a former RCMP spokeswoman, said years
of sexual harassment left her with post-traumatic stress disorder
The national force has since worked to change the culture, making it
easier to report bullying and harassment. They committed on Thursday
to initiatives that "support a respectful and inclusive workplace".
The RCMP provides both federal law enforcement across Canada and
provincial and municipal policing in eight provinces and three
territories. They also police some 600 aboriginal communities.
Women have been able to become full-fledged police officers within
the RCMP for over 40 years and now make up about 20% of the force's
Mounties who seek claims will be allowed to remain anonymous. The
independent claim process and compensation scheme will be overseen
by former Supreme Court of Canada judge Michel Bastarache.
But should female Mounties choose to come forward to RCMP leadership
with valid harassment claims, Mr Paulson said, "you can rest assured
that the fist of God will descend on the [perpetrators]".