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Ontario Enhancing Police Response to Sexual Violence

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Ontario Enhancing Police Response to Sexual Violence

Ontario is supporting people who have experienced sexual violence or assault through a program that builds partnerships between community and justice partners, front-line victim service providers and police services across the province.

Fifteen two-year pilot projects have been selected that will provide a more compassionate, sensitive response when survivors of sexual violence come forward and report their experiences.

“It is so important that survivors receive the compassionate and appropriate response they deserve from professionals across all sectors.‎ By encouraging police to try new practices and approaches, we will help make the legal system more responsive to survivors. ‎This is a key part of It’s Never Okay, our plan to put an end sexual violence and harassment in Ontario.” — Indira Naidoo-Harris, Minister of Women’s Issues

The projects will also enhance police investigative practices, with a goal of building stronger cases and improving justice system outcomes.

This initiative is part of It’s Never Okay, Ontario’s ground-breaking action plan to end sexual violence and harassment, and also supports Walking Together: Ontario’s Long-Term Strategy to End Violence Against Indigenous Women.

Building a safer, more inclusive and more equitable province is part of Ontario’s plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.

QUICK FACTS

  • Ontario has allocated $1.795 million over two years to support 15 police pilot projects, with report-back requirements at specific milestones.
  • The next call for applications is expected to be issued to police services in spring 2018.
  • It is estimated that one in three Canadian women experiences sexual assault.
  • Ontario has committed $41 million over three years to support implementation of the provincial Sexual Violence and Harassment Action Plan.

“Promoting a compassionate and effective police response is one of many measures our government is taking to help more survivors of sexual violence feel comfortable coming forward. This funding will help ensure a survivor-centred and effective investigative approach as these cases are brought forward and work their way through the justice system.” — Marie-France Lalonde, Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services