N.B. government closes loophole to protect victims of domestic violence
Published Wednesday, December 6, 2017 9:59PM AST
Dec. 6 is a day set aside to remember the victims of the Montreal Massacre 28 years ago, marked by vigils across the Maritimes and new rules put into effect by the New Brunswick government
The Liberals have moved to close a loophole that previously let insurance agencies deny payouts to domestic abuse victims.
“A partner may cause damage to their home either during the relationship or after the relationship has ended. Their portion of the property will be insured,” says New Brunswick Finance Minister Cathy Rogers.
Insurance advocate Michele Pelletier knows of at least one recent case of this happening in New Brunswick where someone was on the hook for damages caused by their partner.
“They're innocent people so they've been victimized twice,” says Pelletier. “They were losing their house plus losing the insurance they had paid for to protect."
It's a win in a year that has seen its fair share of triumphs, most recently with the explosion of the #MeToo movement. On Wednesday, Time Magazine revealed not one person of the year but thousands, dubbing them “The Silence Breakers.”
“It's really great to see that TIME is recognizing not just one particular person, not one newsmaker, but really recognizing that it really is about this ground swell,” says Beth Lyons, executive director of the New Brunswick Women’s Council, “this immense number of women who are coming forward and very bravely sharing their stories and breaking that silence.”
While the New Brunswick Women’s Council points out this isn't the first time a hashtag campaign exposing violence against women has gone viral, they still say it's progress.
Kelly Regan of the Nova Scotia Advisory Council says it’s also important for men to stand against sexual violence.
“It's not just women who can make a change here. Men have to be part of this change, too. Men have to examine their actions and change their actions,” says Regan.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Cami Kepke.