We did it, but there is much more work to do. We’ve achieved our goal of obtaining an independent review of the original police investigation into Rehtaeh’s case - six days after we launched this petition, the N.S. government reversed course and promised the review, details of which have finally been announced - and I am extremely grateful to the over 460,000 people who supported the campaign. However, it is clear the review will focus on cyberbullying, and does not address the larger issue of sexual assault and how to prevent another case like Rehtaeh’s. A failure to address these issues means our justice system is bound to continue to fail victims of sexual assault. That’s why, as Nova Scotia heads into a provincial election, I’m asking everyone who supported Rehtaeh and her family by signing this petition to now help us pressure all party leaders to include a plan for the prevention of sexual violence in their electoral platforms. Please sign the new petition here: (www.Change.org/BreakTheSilenceNS), and help us continue the struggle against sexual violence in Nova Scotia, and across the country.
**UPDATE** Rehtaeh will finally have justice. Today I received a call from the Premier's office saying they will be launching an "independent review of the actions of police and the Public Prosecution Service in the Rehtaeh Parson's case." They have yet to announce exactly who will review the case. Until the reviewers are announced and we know they are truly independent I will be leaving the petition page open for more people to sign. Holding authorities accountable is how we make sure tragedies like this don't happen again, so thank you everyone!
I am horrified at what happened to Rehtaeh. She was a beautiful, caring person. She was a amazing artist. She loved animals.
While I haven't seen her in a few years, I'm friends with her family and I can't believe how our community and the authorities failed to protect her.
Seventeen months ago, she was raped. The rape was photographed and the photos were shared around her Nova Scotia community. Rehtaeh was destroyed by this. Any 15 year old would be. She was called a slut. She was bullied. She faced depression. And this week she took her own life.
After Rehtaeh's rape, the RCMP investigated for a year but said there was not enough evidence to lay charges.
How is this possible? Everyone knows what happened. Everyone knows about the photos. Everyone knows she was 15 when those photos were taken. Everyone saw her being bullied and shamed at school. How can police say they didn't have the evidence they needed to pursue charges? Do we not have laws that cover this kind of abuse, from photo-sharing to cyberbullying?
Nova Scotia’s Justice Minister Ross Landry must call an independent inquiry into this situation. The Minister must find out if the police ran this investigation properly and determine if there is important evidence that was not taken into account when they decided to close this case.
The Minister said he would not order a review of the of the RCMP investigation. Hours later, following the huge outpouring of concern from the community, he has said he is now open to considering what options are available. The Minister must call for an independent inquiry and we must all sign this petition to make sure he knows how important this is.