Canadian military releases progress report on sexual misconduct

Canada’s top soldier says the military is making progress in addressing sexual misconduct within the ranks.

Chief of Defence Staff Gen.

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Jonathan Vance released a progress report Monday on the Canadian Armed Forces’ efforts to address “inappropriate sexual behaviour” after a former Supreme Court judge concluded last year that sexual misconduct was “endemic” in the military.

Vance said the military has adopted or is working on a number of recommendations outlined in Marie Deschamps’ damning report.

Since Deschamps’ report was released in March 2015, the military has opened a sexual misconduct response centre, where members and others can file complaints. The military is also planning to survey its personnel to better understand the scope of the problem, Vance said.

“This will take time, but we are determined,” he said. “The consequences of not succeeding are too dire.”

The progress report released Monday shows that 204 individuals, including 156 members of the Canadian Armed Forces, contacted the sexual misconduct response centre between Sept. 15, 2015 and the end of December. Of those, 53 reported a sexual offence and 32 contacted the centre about sexual harassment.

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