One year after the N.S. mass shooting many unanswered questions remain
HALIFAX -- It's been one year since the worst mass shooting in Canadian history took place in Nova Scotia.
Many say they are still left with unanswered questions and are calling on the Mass Casualty Commission to be open up about their progress as they look into what happened last April.
"I still want to know why an alert wasn't sounded on that Saturday night, which would have, I think, warned people here in advance," said Lenore Zann, the member of Parliament for the riding of Cumberland-Colchester.
Questions surrounding why the emergency alert system was not used to send out a warning is just one of the topics the Mass Casualty Commission will look into. Due to the complexity and depth of the investigation in front of those in charge of the public inquiry, experts say the findings from the commission shouldn't be expected quickly.
"This is certainly a very big undertaking and one that will, of course, take a lot of time to do it justice," said Wayne Mackay, a Dalhousie University Law professor in Halifax.
The official inquiry into the mass shooting was launched in October 2020. In a release from the Mass Casualty Commissioners, they say they're making significant progress on their mandate.
"To date, this has included setting up our offices in Truro and Halifax, hiring our staff, planning and commencing our research work, making progress on obtaining document disclosure, commencing our investigations, issuing a call for participants, and connection with some of those most affected," wrote the commission.
"Over the coming months, we will provide our Rules of Procedure, continue our investigations, schedule our public proceedings, and review the documents and information provided to us by Participants and the Commission team."
Mackay says while the commission is busy laying the groundwork for their investigation, the public perception may be that not much has happened to move the inquiry forward.
"It is very important to keep everyone informed, particularly the survivors of the many tragic victims of this, of what's happening and when they think they might have some answers," he said.
Randy Delorey, Nova Scotia's justice minister agrees, saying he too has many unanswered questions.
In an email to CTV News, he says, "It is our hope that the facts and answers discovered by the public inquiry commissioners will provide the families and communities with some closure and help to prevent similar tragic events in the future."
The answers many are waiting for are still more than a year away. The Mass Casualty Commissions interim report is due by May 1, 2022. The final report is expected six months later, in November 2022.
The commissions hearings have yet to begin.