Striking Police in Calgary Const. Kim Prodaniuk’s sexual harassment lawsuit would be an injustice not only for her but also for all female members of the Calgary Police Service, her lawyer argued on Friday.
Brendan Miller, who acts on behalf of Prodaniuk in her lawsuit against the Service, the City of Calgary, the Chief’s Office and the Calgary Police Association, responded to a motion by the defendants to remove their statement of claim.
Attorneys Nini Jones and David Pick argued that since Prodaniuk’s claim was work-related, it would fall under the collective bargaining agreement and police law and not give them a civil right.
“She is trying to sue her union, the Calgary Police Association … as well as her employer over matters arising out of and in her workplace,” Jones told Justice Jim Eamon.
“They are matters that have always been regulated in the collective agreement,” she said.
Eamon asked if this would also apply to a sexual assault incident between two officers, and Jones said this should be treated as a complaint by the CPA.
Miller offered an analogy in which one officer raped another in the Cuff N ‘Billy union bathroom during a CPS sanctioned event.
“Sexual assault or harassment, no matter who does it or where, is not outside the jurisdiction of this court,” said the lawyer.
Pick argued the lawsuit was doomed to fail due to the jurisdiction and should be dismissed.
“The lawsuit before you has no prospect of success and should be taken on the basis that the court does not have jurisdiction,” he said.
But Miller said it was important for a court to determine the issues raised in Prodaniuk’s lawsuit.
“In this case and the motion that is essentially being brought before this court, it is about access to justice,” said Miller.
“If the accused are right, the court must deny Const access to justice. Prodaniuk and the numerous female officers from the Calgary Police Service awaiting your decision on this very important issue, ”he said.
“On the other hand, if the plaintiff is right, this court provides a forum for decision and redress that the collective agreement does not.”
Prodaniuk, who has been on stress vacation since 2017, filed her lawsuit in 2019 for being the victim of harassmentsexually harassment, Intimidation and “outrageous Behavior.”
Prodaniuk’s unproven claim indicates that she is searching Damage for loss of reputation; emotionally, mentally and physically Need and suffering, including depression and fear; and for the inability return to service, resulting in economic losses.
Eamon reserves its decision on the application.
On Twitter: @KMartinCourts