The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) today announced the results of its unfounded sexual assault file review, and outlined actions the organization is taking to strengthen sexual assault investigations, oversight and victim support.
Earlier this year, the RCMP began a review of all unfounded sexual assault files from 2016. The RCMP created a team in Ottawa to review divisional files, assess all aspects of sexual assault investigations, consult with external stakeholders, partners and experts, and provide direction on how to improve RCMP investigations into these serious crimes.
The culmination of this review, The Way Forward: The RCMP's Sexual Assault Review and Victim Support Action Plan, can be found at www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca/en/the-way-forward-the-rcmps-sexual-assault-review-and-victim-support-action-plan.
The RCMP is taking action to strengthen police training and awareness, investigative accountability, victim support, and public education and communication.
The RCMP is committed to ensuring investigative excellence and support for victims of sexual assault in Canada. Our objectives are clear:
- treat victims of sexual assault with compassion, care and respect, informed by established evidence-based best practices;
- conduct sexual assault investigations across Canada consistently and to the highest professional standards, with oversight practices established to ensure the greatest level of accountability and stewardship of investigations; and,
- increase public awareness and trust of RCMP sexual assault investigations and encourage greater levels of reporting.
The RCMP will continue working with Canadian law enforcement agencies, stakeholders and government partners, including Status of Women Canada, to share best practices, seek advice and input on sexual assault investigation procedures, help identify training gaps, and ensure that the training offered to RCMP officers is culturally relevant and trauma-informed.