On 25 November 2019, the Federal Court of Canada approved the Final Settlement Agreement (FSA) of a class action lawsuit related to sexual misconduct in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF)-Department of National Defence (DND). The settlement includes all former and current CAF members, DND employees, and Staff of the Non-Public Funds, Canadian Forces who experienced sexual assault, sexual harassment, and/ or discrimination based on gender, sex, gender identity or sexual orientation in connection with their military service and/or employment.
“The approval of this settlement represents a significant milestone. We recognize how incredibly difficult it is to share such painful and personal experiences. We assure you that these stories have made an important and lasting impact on us, and have further strengthened our dedication to change,” stated the Chief of the Defence Staff, General Jonathan Vance and Deputy Minister, Jody Thomas, in a joint message to all Defence Team members.
The range of individual compensation for most eligible class members is $5,000 to $55,000. Compensation will depend on the type of sexual misconduct, an assessment of the harm suffered, and the number of class members that submit claims. Class members who experienced exceptional harm (and those who have previously been denied VAC benefits in respect of that harm) may be eligible for amounts up to $155,000. The settlement also outlines changes to CAF and Veterans Affairs Canada policies and provides an opportunity for individuals to share their experiences with senior DND-CAF representatives through a facilitated restorative engagement process.
Eligible class members can learn more about their legal rights and options, as well as details about the settlement and the claims process, by checking the administrator’s website, "CAF-DND Sexual Misconduct Class Action Settlement" where they can find a copy of the final settlement agreement and other relevant documents. They can also contact the administrator:
Epiq Class Action Services Canada Inc.
By mail:CAF-DND Sexual Misconduct Class Action
c/o Epiq, P.O. Box 507, STN B
Ottawa, Ontario, K1P 5P6