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The complainants say they suffer from post-traumatic stress.

Six police officers file for class action for harassment and discrimination

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Six police officers, including Cary Ryan above, say they were victims of discrimination and harassment at work.

  • Dominique Lévesque (View profile)Dominique Lévesque

Six municipal police officers and ex-police officers have filed a class action lawsuit in the British Columbia Supreme Court claiming they were victims of harassment and discrimination based on their gender.

Warning: This article contains details that some people may find offensive.

The complainants who come from the four corners of the province denounce their colleagues, but also their superiors.

In the 25-page document filed Wednesday at the Supreme Court , the province's 13 municipal police forces are named.

A complainant claims that a police officer threatened to penetrate her with a service rifle .

Another says a colleague drew a penis in her notebook and wrote: Next time it won't be on a notepad.

Other allegations outlined in the court filing by the six women describe regular comments about oral sex, unwanted touching and sexual propositions.

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The complainants come from the four corners of the province.

All the complainants say they suffer from post-traumatic stress because of the alleged harassment and claim to have filed an internal complaint, without success. They say that the complaints even led to more violence.

Cary Ryan, a former police officer with the West Vancouver Police Department and one of the six plaintiffs, explains that they hope to force the government, police forces and cities that hold them accountable.

The plaintiffs are calling for systemic changes as well as changes in laws and policies.

We have suffered systemic violence, discrimination, harassment, sexual violence, she says. There were physical, psychological and financial consequences.

It was, either leave [the police] or commit suicide. I know these are very serious things to say, but that's how we all felt.

A quote from Cary Ryan, former police officer, West Vancouver Police Department

It's 2023 and we're still fighting for rights women! We are still fighting for fairness and equality in the workplace.

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Female police officers need protection from their employers, says Cary Ryan, a former police officer.

It's not about my story or that of the other complainants, adds Cary Ryan. It is a collective experience of decades of prejudice against women.

I chose to participate in the class action because I left the force 15 years ago. We have the courage to speak up when other people do it first. We estimate that hundreds more women will come forward.

A quote from Cary Ryan, former officer, West Vancouver Police Department

Cary Ryan explains that 15 years later, she is better, has changed careers and is in a position to help other women, to give a voice to some women who are no longer here.

The plaintiffs are first attempting to have their class action certified in the Supreme Court of British Columbia. They are also considering filing a complaint with the Human Rights Tribunal.

  1. City of Abbotsford
  2. District of Saanich Centre
  3. City of Delta
  4. District of the Municipality of Esquimalt
  5. City of Nelson
  6. City of New Westminster
  7. District of the Municipality of Oak Bay
  8. City of Port Moody
  9. District of the Municipality of Saanich
  10. City of Surrey
  11. City of Vancouver
  12. City of Victoria
  13. District of the Municipality of West Vancouver

In In a statement received by email, the Vancouver Police Department (VPD) says it has no tolerance for harassment, intimidation, racism and discrimination.

The VPD affirms that, where necessary, it imposes disciplinary measures or corrective measures.

In recent years, we have made important progress toward becoming a more equitable and inclusive organization, but we know there is still work to be done to do.

With information from Karin Larsen and Benoît Ferradini

  • Dominique Lévesque (View profile)Dominique LévesqueFollow< /li>
Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116