Do we need a new law?

People are saying there are already laws that cover what happened to our daughter Rehtaeh. For sexual assault that’s true. But there is something else that happened that our current laws do not cover.

Rehtaeh went through much of what she did because a photograph of her was taken with a cellphone during the sexual assault. I haven’t seen that picture and I never want too. It was a violation of her trust and it dehumanized her.

That photo was sent, device to device, with the sole intent to humiliate her. Someone thought it would be funny. It was posted on Facebook and she was tagged in it. Emotionally it killed her.

People are saying there are laws that cover this but they are wrong. What that person did to her is not illegal. We were told it was a “community issue,” not a police one. We don’t even know what that means other than doing this ugliness to our child was legal. It’s impossible for me to get my head around that.

So yes, we are asking for a new law. A law that can protect our children from having their lives destroyed so a few sick individuals can get their kicks.

Our children deserve that much.

6 thoughts on “Do we need a new law?

  1. I have no legal knowledge, whatsoever, just to be clear..
    I found this on a Canadian Government Justice Website. Could this apply/help?

    1.6 Cyber-Stalking and Online Harassment
    Criminal harassment can be conducted through the use of a computer system, including the Internet.[10] Although this type of conduct is described in various ways, not all such conduct falls within Canada’s definition of criminal harassment. For example, “cyber-stalking” or “on-line harassment” is often used to refer to (1) direct communication through e-mail; (2) Internet harassment, where the offender publishes offensive or threatening information about the victim on the Internet; and (3) unauthorized use, control or sabotage of the victim’s computer.[11] In some cyber-stalking situations, criminal harassment charges may be appropriate; however, depending on the activity involved, charges under sections 342.1 (unauthorized use of a computer), 342.2 (possession of device to obtain computer service) and subsection 430(1.1) (mischief in relation to data) should also be considered. Activities that can be considered cyber-stalking can include delivering threatening or harassing messages through one or more of the following:
    • e-mail;
    • chat rooms;
    • message boards;
    • newsgroups; and
    • forums.
    Other variations of cyber-stalking include the following:
    • sending inappropriate electronic greeting cards;
    • posting personal advertisements in the victim’s name;
    • creating Web sites that contain threatening or harassing messages or that contain provocative or pornographic photographs, most of which have been altered;
    • sending viruses to the victim’s computer;
    • using spy-ware to track Web site visits or record keystrokes the victim makes; and
    • sending harassing messages to the victim’s employers, co-workers, students, teachers, customers, friends, families or churches or sending harassing messages forged in the victim’s name to others.[12]

  2. Here, it appears that Canada/Canadian Department of Justice is a Signatory / Initiator of this UN Resolution…do not know if this has the weight of law here in Canada, but, its presence / links from the Canadian Department of Justice Website would to me indicate some import…

    Department of (Canadian) Justice – Family Violence Initiative
    The Department of Justice Canada is a key player in Canada’s efforts to put the issue of violence against women and children on the international agenda. The Department has been involved in developing international treaties, resolutions and reports relating to family violence, violence against women and children, and child sexual exploitation. It also participates in related international conferences.
    • International Treaties, Resolutions and Reports
    • Links to International Organizations
    International Treaties, Resolutions and Reports
    Justice Canada contributes to or has taken part in:
    Convention on the Rights of the Child
    Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography (CRC-OP-SC)
    Article 3
    1. Each State Party shall ensure that, as a minimum, the following acts and activities are fully covered under its criminal or penal law, whether such offences are committed domestically or transnationally or on an individual or organized basis:
    (c) Producing, distributing, disseminating, importing, exporting, offering, selling or possessing for the above purposes child pornography as defined in article 2.
    Article 2(c) Child pornography means any representation, by whatever means, of a child engaged in real or simulated explicit sexual activities or any representation of the sexual parts of a child for primarily sexual purposes.
    Article 8
    1. States Parties shall adopt appropriate measures to protect the rights and interests of child victims of the practices prohibited under the present Protocol at all stages of the criminal justice process, in particular by:
    (a) Recognizing the vulnerability of child victims and adapting procedures to recognize their special needs, including their special needs as witnesses;
    (b) Informing child victims of their rights, their role and the scope, timing and progress of the proceedings and of the disposition of their cases;
    (c) Allowing the views, needs and concerns of child victims to be presented and considered in proceedings where their personal interests are affected, in a manner consistent with the procedural rules of national law;
    (d) Providing appropriate support services to child victims throughout the legal process;
    (e) Protecting, as appropriate, the privacy and identity of child victims and taking measures in accordance with national law to avoid the inappropriate dissemination of information that could lead to the identification of child victims;
    (f) Providing, in appropriate cases, for the safety of child victims, as well as that of their families and witnesses on their behalf, from intimidation and retaliation;
    (g) Avoiding unnecessary delay in the disposition of cases and the execution of orders or decrees granting compensation to child victims.

  3. Our goal is to hold the social networks accountable for the hosting and distribution of the photos and the texts so hurtful and damaging to our children and those who love them.
    The world’s greatest minds are working with us and we need all the help we can get!
    JIm Nico, CEO/Founder of SNI
    The Social Network Show®

  4. I wonder……if police in Nova Scotia are aware, that Canada has apparently an even broader definition of Child Pornography?

    I wonder, if some of the “discussions” and “comments” expressed on line/in text/in school, might fall into this defention?
    “Even though the sexual situations are only in print and not depicted in images, police say they might still constitute child pornography.
    “Depending on what the photo is and what’s written, it could be considered child pornography,” said Det. Paul Krawczyk of the child exploitation section of the Toronto Police Services.
    This text-definition of child pornography only exists in Canada, Krawczyk says, and if a server is located in the United States, Instagram is not obliged to take the posts down.
    Krawczyk, one of the country’s leading online child pornography experts ……….”

  5. I’m Confused..
    These Youth have their clothes on.
    These Youth are doing what is termed a sexually suggestive dance.
    These Youth THEMSELVEs posted same on youtube

    Yet, these Youth are suspended/risk their Graduation

    school administrators claim violates their zero-tolerance sexual harassment policy.
    As Gawker points out, the Student Handbook prohibits “verbal, visual, or physical conduct of a sexual nature made by someone from or in the educational setting.”

    Seriously, do Canadian Schools / Nova Scotia Schools not have similar policies…..especially when committed against another????

  6. I sincerely hope those that are trying for reform realize that unless social network owners stop allowing, show casing, spotlighting crimes against us–especially our children–we will not make a dent in online cyber bullying.

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