Protect Female Police Officers from abuse and discrimination in Canadian Police Forces
  • Petitioned Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police

This petition was delivered to:

Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police
Federal Ombudsman for Victims of Crime
Canadian Federal Government
Police Ethics Committee
Quebec Provincial Government - Police Ethics Committee

Protect Female Police Officers from abuse and discrimination in Canadian Police Forces

    1. Denise Robinson
    2. Petition by

      Denise Robinson

      Ottawa, Canada

February 2013


From Denise Robinson: The support of diligent, open minded and compassionate people everywhere. They helped carry my message and it resulted in parties being able to resolve this incident.

Female Police officers across Canada, not just in the RCMP, are afraid to come forward with allegations of abuse, harassment and bullying on the job because complaints are not taken seriously and often it is the female officer and— not the problem officers — who face punishment and even job loss.

I myself am a female Police Officer who was sexually assaulted by a fellow male officer and after reporting the assault I faced punitive treatment from my employer. In my experience I was not supported or helped by my police force in a way that we as Canadian’s would expect a victim of crime to be treated. Instead my employer abandoned me, cut off my pay and offered no support.

This petition is not just about my case, but it is meant to bring awareness of the high prevalence of abuse, harassment and bullying of female officers in the law enforcement community. It is shocking that in this day of equality and civil liberties that these institution are still seeing blatant discrimination towards women.

My story is an extreme example of discriminatory treatment toward women, but I have spoken with several female officers from across this country and stories like this are not uncommon. The existence of the “Old Boys Club and the Blue Wall” are valid and true barriers to true equality in the law enforcement community.


I was assaulted by a fellow colleague, a male police officer who I worked with and who trusted to protect me as a fellow sworn officer. This Officer breached his oath to me and to the community when, while on duty, he entered my home and sexually assaulted me. After assaulting me, he left my residence and went back on duty and into the community.

I believed that the “police brotherhood” would support me and protect me, I reported the assault and within days I found myself on forced medical leave with no pay and no support. I was kicked out of my police residence and sent way. I was offered no assistance with medical treatment, no financial support, not even emotional support.

The police claimed the offense happened while I was off duty so it was not their problem. This same force who I put my life on the line for every day, who I swore to protect and serve every day, had no interest in helping me.

In comparison, the accused officer who assaulted me was put on suspension with FULL PAY. He was allowed to return after three months off and continued to be a member of the police community.

This is the typical atmosphere of “blue wall” and protection of officers reputation at all cost. The police institution is still sacrificing the rights of women in order to protect its image and atmosphere of the boys club. 

This officer plead guilty to sexually assaulting me. He was allowed to work right up until his sentencing 2 ½ years after the assault. After the sentencing hearing I was forced to fly south on the same plane. As the suspect was being escorted to jail my “fellow officers” came to the airport to see him off and say goodbye. No one of them approached me or offered condolences.



 I just want to add a message to all the hardworking, honest and dedicated law enforcement, corrections, special constables, military police, protection officers, security and other in this field. One - thank you for your support. It is hard that our industry is being criticized in the media, BUT we who do this job with good intentions have to use our voice if we want to see change. When good men and women say nothing, we risk this behaviour continuing. There are many, many honest, brave and honourable men and women  in this country who still can be counted on to protect and serve us.

Recent signatures


    1. Accused serves 5 months of 18 month sentence

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer

      Hello All,
      I has been a year since I last posted and updated you are this case of injustice within Canadian Police community. I know this is the last topic any of us want to read about or discuss this time of year. That said, it is easy for us become complacent and turn away from difficult issues, in favor of blissful ignorance. These issue are not going away. It is now one year later and more women are coming forward and abuse is continuing not doing away.

      Please, if you can, re-activate this issue and spread the word so that these institutions continue to feel pressure to address this ongoing problem of discrimination, harassment and abuse in Canadian Police organizations.

      As an update on my case. The accused eventually plead guilty to a lesser charge of Sexual assault. He was sentenced to 18 month in prison and only served 5. He was released back in to the community.

      I no longer work for the police force, or any police force.

    2. Change is slow but need for change is being acknowledged

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer
      Online tool to help RCMP members report harassment

      VANCOUVER - Policies and procedures are one thing, but Insp. Carol Bradley admits cultural change within the RCMP will take time. Bradley was appointed by the force's British Columbia division earlier this year to guide the response to a rash of sexual harassment allegations within the RCMP and to a report, publicly released for the first time last week, that suggested some female officers believe they would face retribution if they complained about abuse on the job.

    3. We reached 1000!!

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you everyone for the support! we made it to 1000, i will make sure the message gets to the right people and we will wait for their response in the mean time we will keep getting the message out and direct our message to others.
      We should all be proud we are using voice to stand for what we think matters. I am proud to be a part a community that still stands together and speaks up when change is needed.

    4. Reached 1,000 signatures
    5. KRG defends treatment of sexually-assaulted cop

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer

      Kativik Police is claiming they have offered me all the support necessary as defined in the collective agreement. I challenge them to list what those "Supports" have been and what support system they have in place for other officers who may face similar situations.

      NunatsiaqOnline 2012-11-13: NEWS: Nunavik's regional government defends treatment of sexually-assaulted cop

      NEWS: Nunavik November 13, 2012 - 10:50 am "Care has been taken to ensure that Ms. Robinson is treated fairly" The Kativik Regional Government issued a statement Nov.

    6. Reached 750 signatures
    7. Sexual Assault victim fights back

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer
      Woman fights for back pay after rape by fellow police officer

      OTTAWA - An Ottawa woman who was raped by a fellow Kativik Regional Police Force officer is battling the police service more than two years later over what she calls an unofficial suspension without pay.

    8. Globe and MAIL prints victim impact statement from trial

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer
      Denise Robinson's victim impact statement

      On Aug. 24, Denise Robinson gave a powerful victim's impact statement in a Kuujjuaq, Que., court as her police-officer colleague, Joe Willie Saunders, was sentenced to an 18 month jail term for a sexual assault he perpetrated against her. Here is what she told the court.

    9. Globe and Mail picks up story

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer

      It is hard to see this a victory as this fight is very stressful and emotional. That said I thank Colin Freeze of the Globe and Mail for putting in so much time on investigating this story.

      Raped police officer offered cash to quit

      For three years she had worked at patrolling Inuit communities in Quebec's far north. But ever since she reported the February, 2010, sexual assault days after it happened, she has not worked or received a paycheque.

    10. Reached 500 signatures
    11. Kativik Government Threatening to sue victim

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer

      I have received a stern warning that in less i remove all mention of my case and reference to Kativk Regional Government, Kativik Police Force and any other image or comment that may relate to them i will face legal action.

      They claim i am hurting their reputation by posting this petition and have no right to ask for an enquiry into their conduct or operations.

    12. Reached 250 signatures
    13. Proud to see the momentum growing!

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer

      Today your support has caught the eye of the media who are interested in publishing this story! Lets hope this happens.We have surpassed 100 signatures......lets reach for 1000!!!!!!!!!!!

      "Every time we turn our heads the other way when we see the law flouted, when we tolerate what we know to be wrong, when we close our eyes and ears to the corrupt because we are too busy or too frightened, when we fail to speak up and speak out, we strike a blow against freedom and decency and justice."

      R. Kennedy

    14. Reached 100 signatures
    15. Former Nunavik cop jailed 18 months for sexual assault

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer
      NunatsiaqOnline 2012-09-28: NEWS: Former Nunavik cop jailed 18 months for sexual assault

      NEWS: Nunavik September 28, 2012 - 9:45 am Joe Willie Saunders, 25, gets 18-month sentence for sex assault on fellow KRPF member UPDATED: A former officer with the Kativik Regional Police Force is now serving out an 18-month jail sentence after pleading guilty to sexually assaulting another KRPF member.

    16. Reached 10 signatures
    17. Women Police officers facing years of abuse and harassment

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer
      B.C. Mountie alleges years of sexual harassment - Politics - CBC News

      CBC News has learned that one of B.C.'s highest profile Mounties says she's suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder after years of sexual harassment. Cpl. Catherine Galliford was the face of the B.C. RCMP for years. During her tenure as the RCMP's spokesperson, Galliford announced the arrest of Robert William Pickton and revealed charges had been laid in the Air India bombing.

    18. Female Mounties still fear reporting harassment

      Denise Robinson
      Petition Organizer
      Female Mounties still fear reporting harassment - British Columbia - CBC News

      Female Mounties are afraid to come forward with allegations of sexual harassment or bullying on the job because they don't have faith their complaints will be taken seriously and they believe it will be them - not the problem officers - who will ultimately be punished, an internal RCMP report has found.


    Reasons for signing

    • Alex Ewanovich EDMONTON, CANADA
      • over 1 year ago

      Women should be able to do their job without having to worry about being assaulted and treated unfairly. The way that the crime was dealt with was absolutely atrocious. The residence basically swept her, and the crime, under the rug so they wouldn't have to deal with that. It's sick.

    • Fenton Hickey BATHURST N B, CANADA
      • over 1 year ago

      All are equal

    • ann condie PRESCOTT, CANADA
      • almost 2 years ago

      There should me many more signatures....

    • Lisa Byrne OTTAWA, CANADA
      • almost 2 years ago

      All Canadians should be safe, everywhere from sexual assault.

      • almost 2 years ago

      This is outrageous the officer should have fired and prosecuted not simply put to desk duty with full pay.

      The victim is a different story her medical suspension should have been WITH pay and NOT without!

      I also think 18 months is a slap on the wrist.


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