In interview at Greater Montreal Téléjournal, Minister Jolin-Barrette argued that recently published allegations, including against the actress and host Maripier Morin or the singer Bernard Adamus, represented “a courageous gesture”.
It is already a step to publicly underline it and to have succeeded in carrying out this journey, continued the minister.
All victims are encouraged to report.
Following these public denunciations, I invite people to contact the police so that they can make their denunciation., continued Mr. Jolin-Barrette, before clarifying that, like the police authorities,
the Director of Criminal and Penal Prosecutions (DPCP) is there to receive information, especially to support victims, especially victims of sexual assault.
Among other support services for victims, there are CAVACs, Centers for assistance to victims of crime, as well as CALACS, which are specialized in the fight against sexual assault, clarified the Minister.
According to the latter, recourse to the justice system makes it possible in particular to ensure that
defendants can answer for their actions and stand trial.
We must also not forget, reminded Mr. Jolin-Barrette, that there is now no longer a limitation period for filing a civil complaint concerning a sexual assault. Adopted at full speed in June, law 55 abolished the 30-year time limit that had been put in place by the Marois government in 2013.
With regard to criminal charges, there was no longer a limitation period.
All of this again led the Minister to invite victims of sexual assault to seek justice for redress.
Confidence to recover
Mr. Jolin-Barrette acknowledged, however, that
there is always work to be done to improve the justice system and support for victims of sexual assault, especially when they do not dare to call on the authorities, for fear of being unable to prove facts that often occurred in private with their attacker.
There are, however, a lot of dedicated people supporting victims, the minister said, before adding that the Victims’ Compensation Act allows them to be compensated without them having to first obtain a conviction of their aggressor in court.
The State is there to support you and to ensure that, through all of this combat, the government is there to offer help and support in a reconstruction process, he said again.
It is important to be there for the victims, and we will continue to improve the basket of services.
The Minister finally referred to a “constant process”, particularly with regard to the support, by the DPCP, of various police forces, in order to improve services for victims of sexual assault.
There is nothing perfect, but we are at work to improve things. I think in recent years there has been an awareness across the justice system, underlined Simon Jolin-Barrette.
You can contact CAVAC at 1-866-532-2822.
You can also contact the CALACS group at 514-529-5252, in the Montreal region, or at 1-877-717-5252 outside the metropolis.