OPP, IIU TO INVESTIGATE ALLEGED ASSAULTS TIED TO MANITOBA HYDRO PROJECTS
WINNIPEG Manitoba RCMP have called in outside investigators to probe historical alleged assaults linked to hydro projects in the province’s north, but First Nations leaders say the government should still commit to an inquiry.
A report released last month by the province’s Clean Environment Commission – an arm’s-length review agency – outlined discrimination and sexual abuse at the Crown utility’s work sites in the 1960s and 70s. The report said the arrival of a largely male construction work force led to the sexual abuse of Indigenous women and some alleged their complaints to RCMP were ignored.
The Independent Investigation Unit (IIU) of Manitoba, the province’s police watchdog, said on Friday it will investigate any allegations involving RCMP officers.
Any historical criminal investigations involving hydro employees or contractors will be handled by the Ontario Provincial Police. Manitoba RCMP said the OPP’s involvement is necessary because there were allegations where both the Crown’s employees and RCMP officers may have been present.
“Determining the scope of the investigation will be the responsibility of the respective investigative agencies,” Manitoba RCMP said in a release.