BC Liberal MLAs successfully passed an amendment to the NDP’s Employment Standards Amendment Act in the legislature on Monday. Surrey South MLA Stephanie Cadieux put forward the amendment to extend unpaid leave protections to all victims of sexual violence, regardless of the circumstance.
“Under the NDP’s legislation, those who experience domestic violence are allowed unpaid time off work – but other forms of sexual violence are not covered by the government’s bill,” says Cadieux. “This effectively creates two tiers of victims – ignoring the fact that all individuals who suffer violence may need supports and time away. I’m very happy this legislation will now extend equal treatment to all victims of sexual violence. I’d like to thank the anti-violence sector advocates for their tireless efforts to end violence and to ensure supports are available to all victims.”
BC Liberal Labour Critic John Martin agreed with the importance of ensuring adequate protections for victims of sexual violence.
“The NDP’s legislation contained a serious oversight by not considering individuals who experience sexual violence by someone other than a partner,” says Martin, MLA for Chilliwack. “Violence is violence. The least we can do is provide the same protections to all those who experience such heinous acts.”