I am assuming that all members are in agreement.
(Motion agreed to unanimously)
The Chair: I would like to take this opportunity to make a few committee announcements before we hear the witnesses.
I wish to inform the members that the committee will be sitting on March 5 because one of the witnesses was available only on that date.
We will now proceed. From the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Public Complaints Commission, we will be hearing from Mr. Ian McPhail, Interim Chair, Mr. Richard Evans, Senior Director, and Ms. Lisa-Marie Inman, Director, Reviews and Investigations.
You have 10 minutes to make your presentation, which will then be followed by a question period. I will warn you when you have one minute remaining.
Mr. McPhail, the floor is yours.
Madame Chair, honourable members, thank you for the opportunity to share with the committee the results of the commission’s investigation into workplace harassment in the RCMP.
Given how fundamentally important public support is to the RCMP's ability to carry out its duties and responsibilities, I felt it necessary to initiate a complaint and undertake a public interest investigation following reports that female RCMP members had faced systemic sexual harassment in the workplace.
The commission’s investigation focused on the handling of alleged workplace harassment. It included all forms of harassment, not just sexual harassment. The commission examined the adherence to RCMP policies and procedures, the adequacy of those policies, the thoroughness and impartiality of harassment investigations, as well as harassment-related training. In total, the commission reviewed 718 harassment complaints filed between 2005 and 2011. We did not make findings in respect of individual harassment complaints. Nonetheless, we assessed the handling of each complaint filed.
The investigation found that, overwhelmingly, the problem was with abuse of authority—in other words, bullying. The investigation also revealed that most of the alleged harassment occurred between regular RCMP members. Over 60% of complainants and 70% of respondents were uniformed police officers. The gender breakdown of complainants was virtually half male and half female, while respondents were predominantly male. The commission’s review also found that most of the harassment complaints were dealt with in accordance with the RCMP's harassment policy. However, that policy was capable of being interpreted in a number of ways, which resulted in it being inconsistently applied.
In undertaking this review, the commission was cognizant that the formal complaint files we received from the RCMP may not reflect all instances of harassment as some people may be reluctant to file a formal complaint for various reasons. In an effort to address potential under-reporting, as well as to elicit feedback, a call for public submissions was made. The commission received 63 submissions and, in turn, conducted a number of interviews with interested parties.
Although the empirical data presented to the commission did not support the belief that the RCMP has a systemic issue with sexual harassment, there is no proof to the contrary. Moreover, the simple perception of the existence of systemic poor treatment of employees by colleagues and supervisors, regardless of gender, has a huge impact on both public confidence and the manner in which the RCMP is regarded.
In addition, and perhaps more importantly, for those employees who suffered harassment or workplace conflict, there is a very real human cost. There is also a tremendous strain on the organization when such serious issues are not addressed in an effective and timely manner. As such, the commission’s report urged the RCMP to take a number of concrete and measurable steps to improve its handling of workplace conflict and harassment allegations, including revising the harassment policy to be more inclusive; instituting a system of centralized monitoring and coordination of harassment complaints outside of the divisional chains of command; and establishing an external mechanism for review of harassment decisions, separate from, but not exclusive of, the RCMP's labour relations process.
The commission also recommends that the RCMP develop a comprehensive method to evaluate respectful workplace efforts that is both measurable and quantifiable. The results of such evaluation must be publicly reported.
All of this is intended to enhance the transparency of the process because only if you have what RCMP members themselves see as a fair, open, transparent, and expeditious process will people be comfortable in stepping forward, and the public have confidence in its national police force.
Harassment is a complex problem requiring a complex solution. Policy statements and written procedures are not enough to address this issue. There must be intent on the part of the RCMP to cultivate a more respectful workplace, and that intent needs to be followed up with actions.
I am hopeful that the commission’s report and recommendations will help inform the RCMP in its efforts and further build on the commissioner’s recently released action plan.
With that, I would be happy to answer any questions you may have.
Thank you, Madame Chair. I would like to welcome our guests today.
“Sexual Harassment in the Federal Workplace” is the name of our study, and that's what our focus is here. It's a very serious issue and why we're here today and have been here these past few months.
I will start with a quote from my colleague on the other side, Ms. Ashton, at the time of Commissioner Paulson's last visit. Ms. Ashton had indicated that “We all want to see full resources attached to an effort to eradicate sexual harassment and harassment in the force”.
I just want to make it clear that Bill does give the Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP an extra $5 million and the RCMP $9.8 million, so there is some funding attached.
Mr. McPhail, or Mr. Evans or Ms. Inman if you would like to answer, what impact would Bill , the enhancing RCMP accountability act, have on the organization?
Bill , in our opinion, will have a positive impact on the organization, which is to be recreated as a new civilian review and complaints commission.
Broadly speaking, Bill will provide the new commission with the power to compel witnesses and testimony. It will give the new commission the ability to instigate broad systemic reviews. It will enable the commission to work more cooperatively and to conduct joint reviews with our provincial counterparts.
All in all, it will result in a much more robust authority for the new body, which I believe will have a positive effect.
Yes, let me explain the difference between this particular report and a systemic review.
This report is based on the current authority of the commission to have what is called a chair-initiated complaint. It's not necessary to wait until an individual makes a specific complaint. If the chair of the commission is of the opinion that there is a particular matter that should be investigated, the chair has the authority to institute such a process.
The ability to conduct systemic reviews is broader. It's not necessarily dependent on their being a certain issue. Let me give you an example. Under the authority to be granted by Bill, the new review and complaints commission would have the ability to perform a systemic review of the RCMP's progress in implementing these recommendations and to do a broader review of attitudes and opinions of RCMP members to more accurately determine the full extent of this particular problem.
We weren't quick to say it's not systemic.
Now, if I can first address the initial part of your question, one of our recommendations dealt with the issue of retaliation. It's part of the complaint structure that we advocate. Very simply, we followed the evidence that was available to us. We acknowledge that the evidence we got did not necessarily provide a complete picture, but it was the best available. We're confident that we received all of the files for the period of time in question. Those files did not reveal a systemic issue of harassment. That having been said, we were very careful to say that because of potential underreporting and the fact that records are not kept in cases of informal resolution, it's not possible to say the contrary definitively either.
The key to credibility is independence. Now, the format for that external review can be a senior member of the RCMP, who occupies a position in senior management and is reporting directly. It could be somebody outside the RCMP. But that person should be independent of the divisional chains of command. It cannot be seen as being responsive to other pressures, so the exact format that independence should take is, I think, up to the RCMP.
Further with that, some people had suggested to us that the investigation of harassment complaints, the dealings with these, be completely removed to a separate body. We don't advocate that, and the reason is that we believe it would be a mistake to in effect contract out harassment problems to an outside body. If you contract them out, they're then someone else's responsibility. As part of the creation of a respectful workplace, harassment must be everyone's responsibility.
Thank you, Madam Chair.
Thanks to all of you for taking time to be with us.
As you can very well understand, with all this work and study that we're doing, it's very important to all of us that all the public servants be free to face the daily and expected challenges of a day's work without harassment and without fear of mistreatment by colleagues and co-workers or supervisors. I assure you that our government places our whole confidence in the RCMP and in the system. So we thank you for being here, and thank you for the work you are putting forth.
In your report, your first recommendation reads as follows: “That the RCMP implement a systematically compiled and nationally comparable system of data collection and reporting in respect of workplace conflict.”
What sorts of recommendations are the Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP empowered to make, and will you address policy and procedures, disciplinary measures, and reporting? What measures would you follow?
To begin with, with respect to the specific recommendation that you referred to, I can tell you that the review that the commission performed was the first time, was the first review, that any body analyzed all of the complaint files over a period of time and with a view to assessing how they were handled and how that could be improved.
I would see this as being an ongoing process. No one report is going to solve the problem. No policy statement is going to solve the problem. What needs to be institutionalized within the RCMP—and, frankly, I think this applies to any large organization—is the ability to have proper training, reporting, ongoing monitoring and, at the end of the day, outside review as to how the process has been conducted.
Thank you, Madam Chair.
Thank you very much for being here today. We appreciate it.
My question is on recommendation 11, and specifically data collection. Ms. O'Neill Gordon's last question had to do with that, and I noticed that you were a little rushed in your response. You talked about accessibility and how important it was for the public to be able to access the findings of the data collected.
Since this is a relatively new thing, having started in 2011, I also want to know how you're doing it. What kind of data are important for you to collect? Are you collecting data about the complainants and the departments this is happening in? I want to know what kinds of questions are being asked.
How detailed is the information coming in? How will that ultimately help the way it's collected and accessed?
The recommendation we made was directed at the RCMP. The commission itself won't be collecting RCMP data on an ongoing basis, although, as Mr. McPhail mentioned, it will be open to the commission or the future commission to go in and do a specified activities review or a systematic review, at that point, on how the RCMP is doing with its harassment commitments.
Going forward, with respect to the RCMP's data collection, we're suggesting having a centralized system that collects all the data, basically relating to what's currently there, so that it's brought into the centre. By that we mean data about the complainant, what type of issue it is, what the allegations are, what resolution is sought and, most importantly, what ends up happening with the complaints, what steps were followed throughout, and how it was eventually resolved, as well as any details of the investigation.
Thank you, Madam Chair.
I would like to thank the witnesses for coming here today.
My first question is for Ms. Inman.
You are the director of complaints. As a result, you receive complaints. A short while ago, we heard Mr. Paulson, the RCMP Commissioner, testify before the Standing Committee on Public Safety. He stated that he did not believe women were afraid to file a complaint.
Ms. Inman, since you receive complaints, could you tell me whether women are indeed afraid to file a complaint? In addition, if they do contact you, do they ever decide not to go any further out of fear? Have you seen any evidence of that?
Thank you for your question.
In my current role at the commission, I don't actually receive complaints. I'm the director of reviews. I'm in charge of complaint reviews when people are dissatisfied with the first resolution of their complaint by the RCMP.
As far as your question is concerned about whether or not women are afraid to come forward to report harassment—and tell me if I'm misphrasing this—while that has come up anecdotally and I'd say that it's likely true, there was no way in our investigation to say what the exact extent of that was.
We had made a public submission process in the hope that people would come forward with their stories, if that is what they had experienced. The public submissions we received didn't actually go to that at all. As a result of what we acknowledged as likely under-reporting, we made the recommendations we did, in the hope that by making the system a bit more credible and robust and having a mechanism to deal with complaints about retaliation, more women, men, or whoever it might be who suffered harassment and were afraid to come forward would step up and be more comfortable in making a complaint.
Mr. McPhail, 4% of complaints are related to sexual harassment. The report mentions that 44% of the 718 files are related to complaints made by women. It is about abuse of authority. I would call that abuse of power, which is illegal, in my opinion.
Of the other 40% that are not complaints due to sexual harassment, are there indicators that show that these complaints could be related to pornography or other elements that do not correspond exactly to the definition of sexual harassment, but in fact are? The definition of harassment is restrictive.
I'd like to thank the panel for coming today because as a member of Parliament from B.C., this issue is obviously very top of mind and important to us. I've been very, very impressed by your proactive and measured response to this very large issue. The fact that you went ahead and did this report is quite incredible, including the fact you have statistics now and some concrete evidence with which to back up your reporting to us. I think that's very commendable.
I wanted to quote your conclusion. You say the following in your report:
||The RCMP bears a responsibility to foster public trust to the extent possible, and when the public perceives that the organization is unwilling to adequately protect and discipline its own employees, it is difficult to see how their interactions with the police and trust in the organization would remain unaffected. It is for this reason that swift and effective action must be taken by the RCMP in terms of dealing with workplace conflict and harassment, and taken in a manner that engenders the confidence of both members and the public.
And of course we fully support that conclusion, which is part reason why we're doing this study.
I know that you've spoken about this earlier, but I want to give you some more time. Does Bill answer this question of restoring public trust and give you, as a large organization with some of these issues, the tools to address the issues found within the force?
Because time is short, I will be very specific.
With respect to the first question, I believe that you should address it to the commissioner regarding his progress in implementing that particular recommendation.
With respect to the second question, there's no reason why—in fact, it definitely should be the case that the compilation of harassment information and records should spell out the types of harassment that the complaints deal with....
I invite people to please take their seats. The more time we have with the commissioner, the better.
Good afternoon, everyone. We are beginning the second part of our 60th meeting. Without further ado, I would like to introduce Bob Paulson, who is appearing before the committee for the second time since I have been chair. Welcome, Mr. Paulson. Mr. Paulson is the Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Mr. Paulson, I think you are now a regular at these meetings. You have 10 minutes to make your presentation, and afterward we will move to the question portion. You have the floor.
Madam Chair, members of the committee, thank you for having invited me to speak to you today.
Madame Chair and committee members, thank you for inviting me here today.
Earlier this morning I appeared before your colleagues at the Public Safety and National Security committee, where I spoke of the CPC's recently released report on harassment within the RCMP, and what I'm doing about it. I raised and we discussed our action plan entitled “Gender and Respect”, in which I have tremendous confidence. I believe this plan will help me address issues relating to both the culture and the composition of the RCMP. I'd be happy to discuss these things further with you.
One of the action items in our plan calls for the ramping up of the intake of females in the force to 50% within two years so we can reach a 30% level of female police officers by 2025.
I've been getting a lot of raised eyebrows and skeptical reactions to this goal. People say that there aren't that many women interested in policing and that I'm setting myself up for failure. I disagree. I have challenged my recruiting personnel to bring some innovation to our recruiting strategies and I've challenged our senior leaders and human resources personnel to develop our workplace such that it is respectful of the people who make up the team, regardless of gender.
Policing in today's reality is frankly as challenging and as rewarding a career as there is in Canada right now. It is not for everybody, that's true, which is not to say that it is a man's domain. It is a profession that is in dire need of smart, honest, community-minded, compassionate, resilient, and persistent people.
The RCMP is making progress in bringing about positive change, but there is a lot to do.
It is making progress in bringing about positive change, but there is a lot to do.
Our mission meanwhile is to keep Canadians safe in their homes and their communities. Not a day goes by that I am not amazed and inspired by the work our men and women do to deliver on this mission for all Canadians.
I look forward to our discussions today and I'd be pleased to take your questions.
Thank you very much, Commissioner, for being here. I'm very impressed by the RCMP's testimony today.
One of the things that we heard earlier was basically the size of this issue. Our government does take sexual harassment in the workplace very seriously. It's important that we lock in where the issues lie so that we can make sure we are moving forward in the right way.
We have heard that sexual harassment is about 4% of the overall abuse complaints, which is pretty consistent with what we've been hearing, of 3% to 4%. Is that your understanding as well?
Very briefly on the gender analysis, it found some things that were outside of this discussion around harassment and sexual harassment. Frankly, it found that our policies and our practices were generally bias-free in terms of gender issues.
There are a number of other troubling things that came forward, not unlike what the CPC discovered. I think I heard Mr. McPhail referring to a problem of bullying, and I've described it as misuse of authority and so on.
So the gender action plan, "Gender and Respect" as it's entitled, sets out to take on a whole bunch of issues beyond the harassment and sexual harassment issues, towards going towards a respectful workplace. A number of things are contemplated in that report.
I know there are 37 action items. Many of them deal with how we respond and will respond to harassment complaints, what kind of standards and investigative standards we would have in response to some of these things, timelines, and so on. So we've taken a big step forward to try to put some objective analysis around the organizational response to harassment, but beyond that, I think we have to recognize that there are behaviours that have to be modified to prevent workplace conflict and harassment.
We're glad to have you here again, Commissioner Paulson.
We just heard from Mr. McPhail, and he stated that there is no systemic problem of harassment within the RCMP. When you've spoken in the past, many times you've referred to a cultural dysfunction. To a lot of people there's a parallel between these two concepts. I'm wondering, if there is no systemic harassment crisis, as Mr. McPhail says, what is helping to contribute to the cultural dysfunction you see.
I think it is. I think the element of independence in ultimately reviewing the force's response to harassment complaints and the disposition on some of these complaints is important.
For example, I think there's a wide range of understanding of how that independence would be brought to bear, from independent outside-the-force investigators for harassment complaints to the existing mechanism that we have today, the external review committee that ultimately reviews these things, and the Federal Court, which has weighed in on some of these things. The CPC now and in its new iteration as the civilian complaints review body will be available to do these independent reviews.
I think it's important. It's important to confidence within the force and from outside the force.
I have not heard of a cut of $58 million, so I'll have to be on my Berry as soon as I'm done here.
That said, we have contributed and participated in our end-of-the-deficit reduction exercise. We are well positioned to achieve those goals.
As I said earlier this morning, I don't think this transformation turns on resources particularly. There will be some need for resources. As some said this morning, there's almost $10 million provided for in the new Bill , and that's to do a number of things.
So I don't think it turns on resources; it turns on the attentiveness of managers and executives to deliver on this action plan and to report it to folks such as you.
Thank you, Madam Chair.
Mr. Paulson, thank you for being here today.
This is such a very important subject, and that's why we're here. I have a number of things I want to touch on, sir.
First of all, on the resourcing, I want to commend you for the comment you made previously about how this isn't a resourcing issue, and that it's important enough that you would reallocate resources to these issues.
The $15-million reduction is news to me too, because my understanding is that we're giving $5 million to the complaints commission and $9.8 million to you, sir, to use effectively. I also understand that this morning in the public safety committee, the NDP were very concerned about that investment of funds. You can't have the resources if you don't put them on the table, and we are trying, with Bill , to put them on the table for you.
I'm grateful that you are modernizing and embracing a more comprehensive governance oversight strategy. As you very rightly point out, these are 50% of your clients. Very briefly, how is this $9 million going to be deployed? Will it be on training? Just briefly, you've already implemented in B.C. some training and investigators' training. Give a few examples of how this $9.8 million is going to be used proactively and preventatively.
Thank you, Madam Chair, for the question.
The $9.8 million goes to the implementation of Bill . The lion's share of that money will go to training and preparation of our NCOs.
One of the themes of this new legislative scheme is to allow for conduct management at the lowest possible level at the earliest possible time. In order to achieve that, we need to have our corporals and sergeants, who have somehow stepped back a little bit from their responsibility to look after the people they are in charge of, trained up on how to faithfully implement the new approach to conduct management.
Commissioner, thank you very much for coming again. I hope you will have the same courage to answer some of our questions that you had when you were initially here, the last time. We very much appreciated that. I have to say that you have a huge challenge in front of you.
We saw a full page in the National Post this week on whether we should get rid of the RCMP. There were a whole lot of comments in there. The RCMP represents, for all of us as Canadians, something that we're immensely proud of. That's been tremendously tarnished, not only by the sexual harassment, but also by a lot of the harassment complaints and so on that have come out. The government responded following your last meeting by introducing Bill C-42. There's some money in the budget to help you in all that.
How are you going to convince a young woman in Alberta who's a member of your police service who's being harassed by her supervisor, who's also her detachment commander, that she's safe to go ahead and lodge this complaint? How are you going to build the trust, not only of Canadians, but of all of the men and women in the service out there who are under-reporting. We know that goes on, because people do not report these things until they reach a point where they can't handle them anymore. Where is she going to go when it's her own detachment commander who's the one doing the harassing in a small, rural Alberta area?
I have two answers. One is that she's going to have a number of avenues available to her, from picking up the phone to making a confidential report into the centre of the organization so that it goes around that officer in charge.
But more importantly, I want to address your question about having our members, our employees, having the confidence to raise these issues. I know intuitively that there is a reluctance to complain against authority. I get that. But we have, and we continue to build, a number of strategies from employee consultative groups, to anonymous means of complaining, to having an increased level of oversight and supervision and leadership on that detachment commander. I don't want to have a condition where anybody feels that if they're being bothered, harassed, or put out, they're incapable of coming forward, or the organization is incapable of taking their complaints.
The action plan discusses that at some considerable length, and I'll briefly describe it.
We have a good feeder pool, if I can use the term, of candidates at the NCO and senior NCO levels. We have to get those folks interested in the commissioned officer ranks. Many of them are interested, but not enough of them, so we are tasking our COs and senior officers to embark on a mentoring program of reaching out to the talented candidates and bringing them along.
Then, when they get into the officer corps, we need to be developing those people, by special consideration, for exposure to certain jobs, such as by transferring them to a command position, or mentoring, and getting them ready for the senior executive. We're well positioned, although you wouldn't be able to tell it by looking at the senior executive committee right now. But we're well positioned, and we have a good succession plan to do just that. But I agree that we're short at the senior executive rank.
Thank you, Madam Chair.
Welcome back, Commissioner Paulson.
I don't think anyone has touched base on the particular topic of your zero tolerance policy. I believe it was back in November that we were told that the policy was actually being enforced.
I'm wondering if you could talk about or comment on the value of that type of policy. Is that still first and foremost when dealing with issues and talking about workplace harassment, whether sexual harassment or bullying, or whatever the case may be? I wonder if you could comment on that and whether that's still at the top of the list of things you're enforcing.
I think the zero tolerance approach is better understood as one where we are making sure that all of our supervisors and leaders are acting proactively when they see circumstances that may give rise to some of those complaints, and that when people do make complaints they'd better be acting on them in accordance with our policies and our best practices and so on. So that's how I understand the zero tolerance approach to these kinds of discipline and harassment issues.
But I think that what we are trying to do, more broadly, is to get our leaders and our members, frankly, engaged in these issues, to make sure that even the entry-level constable has a full understanding of what harassment is and what the dynamics of a workplace are, how workplace conflict can lead to these sorts of protracted problems. So we're doing that at Depot, we're doing that in field training, we're doing that with supervisors at their first level entry into the corporal supervisory world, we're doing that with middle managers, and we're doing it with executives.
That's what we need. We've tinkered and we have a plan to refine our process in response to some of these complaints, but I'm much more interested in avoiding these complaints, and that will come from the behaviours of the officers in the workplace.
Thank you very much. We've actually heard numerous witnesses stress the importance of being proactive and dealing with a situation at the very lowest level and making sure that employees recognize the signs of harassment and that it doesn't escalate to a higher degree, which we now have seen.
I'm not sure if it was to one of my colleagues to someone across the floor, but you mentioned with regard to Bill that part of that is going to involve training leaders, or different levels within the RCMP, about different policies. I'm glad that you did mention that. Thank you for that.
We actually heard from Ian McPhail in the previous hour, and I'm going to try to quote him. I wrote it down in scratchy writing, which I'm going to try to read. He indicated that Bill is part of the process and that it's going to give the Commissioner of the RCMP the tools to perform his duties, and the right tools to streamline a very convoluted process.
Do you agree with that statement?
So when we talk about a convoluted process, we're talking about the process of how we've been dealing with sexual harassment and harassment. The measures within Bill and the additional funding are going to assist in that particular application.
Questions have come up at committee a number of times, from the other side, with respect to there being too much power or authority left in one person or office's hands. Bill is actually going to assist in centralizing the responsibility and the accountability into one office, and that office is yours. Do you have any concerns about that?
The question is that someone has to be in charge. At the end of the day, someone ultimately has to be in charge of something, regardless of whether it's this or any other factor in our day-to-day life. Someone has that responsibility. Do you think that responsibility does lie within your office and is that the right direction to go in?
Thank you, Mr. Paulson. Thank you, Ms. James.
You see, when I don't say there's one minute left, it doesn't go well. We don't know how much time is left. It is my mistake.
We go now to Ms. Ashton, who will, I think, share her time with Ms. Day. You have a total of five minutes.
One might say, though, that sexual harassment, of course, is the elephant in the room, or in this case it's what we talk about as a principal focus, so the fact that it's actually missing from a bill that's meant to deal with it is problematic. That's one of the points we've raised.
I just want to go back, Commissioner, to the final point around missing and murdered aboriginal women. Next week at the UN commission, this is going to be a major issue for Canada. When we're talking about women being afraid to come forward, which is similar to the situation of officers in their instances of sexual harassment, what is the RCMP doing on the ground in places like northern B.C., or even where I come from in northern Manitoba, in terms of training? What is being done within the RCMP so that people feel they can come forward?
Thank you for that question, because the RCMP is very active in training our members and in insisting that our members are plugged into their communities where they have the responsibility of policing. So our members get front-line training in terms of awareness issues and cultural-sensitivity issues. Across this country, we bring in people from the groups that we are asked to police to help train our officers in sensitivity issues and issues unique to those cultures.
As I did this morning, I will point to Project Devote in Manitoba, which is looking at missing and murdered aboriginal women there; Project KARE in Alberta, and formerly one in Manitoba; Project Even-Handed in British Columbia, and the Highway of Tears investigation—E-PANA as it's called. All have very sophisticated, elaborate, deliberate outreach programs into those communities, because we recognize that we're not going to solve those crimes and those terrible circumstances without the engagement of those communities. My officers and I have been to the north frequently. I have met with my officers, and I would invite you and your colleagues to come out to Prince George, to spend the night with us in a police car, to see what we do, and to see how we interact with these people, because it's not accurately reflected in some of the reports that you've been reading.
I refuse to withdraw my comments. I am sorry, Ms. James.
In fact, other members discussed Bill C-42 in relation to sexual harassment.
This is unfortunate because the commissioner is with us and we are wasting time. I will repeat what I told you. I thought you were taking a lot of time, but I listened to you thinking that at some point, you would make the link. That is what happened. I think Ms. Ashton did the same thing.
Does that answer your question?
I will ask a few short questions. I don't know how much time I have left.
Mr. McPhail stated that in-person training was very important to prevent harassment. Recommendation No. 10 focuses a lot on online training. We were told that 94% of people would be taking it.
I will ask you a few questions very quickly. How do you ensure this training is provided? How is it evaluated? Is the training different for regular, civilian, subordinate or management staff? What could happen if a person refused to take this training or did not complete it?
Thank you for the question.
The training is provided to all categories of employees. Everyone has to take this training. Regarding evaluation, I can tell you the following.
That's done according to the percentage of people who are taking it and succeeding at it, and the response we're getting from the members who are taking it.
We're talking about online training here, but I want to go back to the face-to-face training, the in-person training that is being left out of the equation, because we do, in that training, in our supervisors, our managers, and our executives, who are all going through these training processes for their new duties, all feature face-to-face, in-person training, discussions, and testing on leadership and on harassment as well. It's not to be left just to the computers and online training. There's an in-person component to it.
Thank you, Madam Chair.
Thank you, Commissioner Paulson, for being here.
Earlier today, my colleague Madam Bateman was talking about the number of officers being trained to investigate harassment. Some are also being trained as harassment advisers. That's very important, because it shows that there are multiple ways of resolving an issue.
Could you describe the harassment advisers in a little more detail and provide an update for the timeline of integrating them into the workplace?
That initiative was to satisfy myself that every employee of the organization was having these issues put before them in such a way that the supervisor could be satisfied by looking into the whites of their eyes, making sure they're having that conversation, and getting feedback from them. That has gone on. I'm satisfied that this has taken place across the country.
My corps sergeant major is adopting a new role and prominence in the organization and is, with his warrant group, who are the sergeant majors across the force, taking on the follow-through of that initiative to make sure that new employees, as they come in, are sat down and met by supervisors. Specific issues relating to harassment, job performance, the mission, and a respectful workplace are all canvassed with them. That's going very well.
Thank you. Thank you very much, Ms. Truppe.
This is the end of our meeting today.
Thank you very much, Mr. Paulson, for having appeared before our committee again. The points you raised will certainly be very helpful for our study.
Thank you to all of you and have a good afternoon.
(The meeting is adjourned)