Independent External Comprehensive Review Timeline
Learn about the milestones, documents, and announcements of progress regarding the Independent External Comprehensive Review (IECR).
Timeline of milestones
Below is a list of the important milestones for the IECR:
- May 20: The Minister of National Defence announces that former Supreme Court Justice, Madame Louise Arbour, will conduct an Independent External Comprehensive Review (IECR) of policies, procedures, programs, practices, and culture within the Department of National Defence (DND) and the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF).
- November 4: The Minister of National Defence accepts interim recommendations provided by Madame Arbour to refer the investigation and prosecution of Criminal Code sexual offences from the military justice system to the civilian justice system. Since then, an intensive effort across federal, provincial, and territorial partners to refer the investigation and prosecution of these cases to civilian authorities has been underway.
- May 20: Madame Arbour delivers the final report of the IECR to the Minister of National Defence. The report provides 48 recommendations across a range of areas that seek to address issues of sexual harassment and misconduct in the DND/CAF.
- May 30: The Minister of National Defence welcomes all 48 recommendations in the IECR and announces that work to implement 17 of the recommendations will begin immediately and that she has instructed DND/CAF to provide an assessment and path forward for the remaining recommendations.
- Final report of the Independent External Comprehensive Review
- News release: Government releases final Independent External Comprehensive Review of the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces and outlines next steps to address and eradicate sexual harassment and misconduct
- Backgrounder: Independent External Comprehensive Review of the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces – Final Report and Next Steps
- October 24: As per recommendation #48 of the IECR, the Minister of National Defence appoints Madame Jocelyne Therrien as External Monitor to oversee DND/CAF efforts to implement the IECR recommendations..
- December 13: The Minister of National Defence tables a report in Parliament indicating that she has directed DND/CAF to move forward on the IECR recommendations The report outlines the work undertaken to implement the immediately accepted 17 recommendations and the steps that will be undertaken to address the remaining 31 recommendations, as well as ongoing and forthcoming DND/CAF culture change initiatives.
- Minister of National Defence's Report to Parliament on Culture Change Reforms in response to former Supreme Court Justice Arbour's recommendations
- News release: Minister Anand updates Parliament on reforms to address sexual harassment and misconduct in the Department of National Defence and the Canadian Armed Force
- Backgrounder: Update on Madame Arbour’s Independent External Comprehensive Review Final Report and Culture Change Reforms in the Department of National Defence and Canadian Armed Forces to Address Sexual Harassment and Misconduct
- May 11:In response to IECR recommendation 12, the Sexual Misconduct Response Centre (SMRC) changes their name to the Sexual Misconduct Support and Resource Centre (SMSRC).
- May 17: The External Monitor releases her first status report, which provides an overview of initiatives related to three themes: prevention; support to affected persons; and input and oversight.
- External Monitor Report - First Status Report
- News release: Defence Minister Anita Anand releases first biannual status report of the External Monitor - Canada.ca
- Statement: Statement from the Minister of National Defence on the First Biannual Report of External Monitor Jocelyne Therrien - Canada.ca
- August 15:The Minister of National Defence announces changes to the military grievance and harassment process, implementing IECR recommendations 7 and 9. CAF members who have experienced sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, or any other form of discrimination based on sex/gender while performing their duties can now choose to direct their complaint to the Canadian Human Rights Commission without first exhausting the internal military grievance and harassment processes.
- August 30:The process to repeal Duty to Report legislation is initiated in response to IECR recommendation 11. This confirms a commitment to put affected persons first, as the Duty to Report created unintended negative consequences for survivors by taking away their agency and control in the reporting process.
- November 20: The External Monitor releases her second status report, which provides observations and progress on the implementation of all 48 IECR recommendations.
- December 6: The Minister of National Defence announces the members and mandate of the Military Colleges Review Board.
- December 13: The Minister of Defence Bill Blair announces that DND/CAF will implement recommendations 1 and 2, which require the revision of terminology, including the abolition of the definition of “sexual misconduct” from DAOD 9005-1 and other policies, and ensuring that sexual assault be included as a standalone item in the definitions section of relevant CAF policies.
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