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Independent External Comprehensive Review into harassment and sexual misconduct in the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces

Toronto, ON – June 29, 2021– Hon. Louise Arbour invites any person who wishes to share any information or opinion, or participate in, her Independent External Comprehensive Review, to contact her at CAFReview@blg.com.

National Defence Minister Harjit S. Sajjan appointed the Honourable Louise Arbour (C.C., G.O.Q.), a former justice of the Supreme Court of Canada, and now Senior Counsel with Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, to conduct an Independent External Comprehensive Review into Sexual Misconduct and Sexual Harassment in the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces (Review).

According to its Terms of Reference, the aim of the Review is to, among other things:

  • shed light on the causes for the continued presence of harassment and sexual misconduct despite efforts to eradicate it;
  • identify barriers to reporting inappropriate behaviour and to assess the adequacy of the response when reports are made;
  • make recommendations on preventing and eradicating harassment and sexual misconduct; and,
  • assess the recruitment, training, performance evaluation, posting, and promotion systems in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), as well as the military justice system’s policies, procedures, and practice to respond to such allegations.

The Review will include the views and Defence workplace experiences of: current and former Department of National Defence (DND) employees; CAF members; Staff of the Non-Public Funds, Canadian Forces employees; and contractors. It will also include the perspectives of those employees, members and contractors who identify as part of historically disadvantaged groups, with specific focus on women, and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Two-Spirit (LGBTQ2) community, to assist the DND and the CAF in furthering understanding of the perspective of these groups. In addition, it will consider all relevant independent reviews concerning the DND/CAF, along with their findings and recommendations.

The Reviewer is in the process of organizing interviews and consultations.  The reviewer invites any person who wishes to share any information or opinion to contact the Review Team at  CAFReview@blg.com, or by mail addressed to Nadia Effendi at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP, Bay Adelaide Centre, East Tower, 22 Adelaide St. W, Toronto, ON M5H 4E3. Anyone without ready access to email may contact Nadia Effendi at 416-367-6728.

The Reviewer and her team are independent of DND and CAF. For more information about the Review, please visit:  BLG.com/CAFReview

Information communicated to the Reviewer and her team in the course of the Review will be received in confidence unless otherwise agreed to by the Review Team and the person providing the information.

For further information: Nadia Effendi, Legal Counsel to Madame Louise Arbour, neffendi@blg.com.

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