A newly published report of a well reputed international human rights watchdog has openly accused RCMP officers of cruelly mistreating and abusing aboriginal women and girls in northern B.C. The New York-based Human Rights Watch enlisted one direct allegation of rape and other assaults by Mounties against several aboriginals in the rural B.C. communities.
The specific incidents was a part of a larger investigation into numerous charges of systemic neglect of missing and murdered aboriginal women alongside B.C.’s Highway 16, so-called the “Highway of Tears.” There have been several reports and studies so far that have recognized a broader crisis, but the latest report has pointed out a specific allegation of abuse by RCMP officers. Although none of these allegations have ever been proven in court. The RCMP refused to directly respond to the recent accusations on Tuesday.
The report of Human Rights Watch revealed its findings from an investigation of last year on request of a Vancouver-based organization, that filed a complaint in 2011 which the authorities in Canada were not fully entertaining. The founder of the Vancouver group Justice for Girls, Annabel Webb, stated that “after years of hearing stories and doing our best to try and get some accountability, we felt we owed it to the girls to take the next steps, to try and get some kind of investigation and bring these allegations and abuses to light.” The lead researcher of the report, Meghan Rhoad, alleged that “at the end of the day, what we want to see is accountability. Accountability for police mistreatment of aboriginal women and girls.”
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