Since 2016, there has been growing concern about the decision made by the Supreme court in R v Jordan impacting women who have and/or are experiencing violence. Battered Women’s Support Services (BWSS) and the Intersectional Feminist Justice Research and Organizing Collaborative (IFJROC) would like to explore the impact of the Jordan Decision on violence against women cases through a national online survey.

We expect that this survey will take no more than 15 minutes to complete. We humbly ask that you share the following with your organization’s members, and your personal networks. Thank you for your time and attention to this!

At the end of the survey, you may enter for a chance to win a $75 gift card to My Sister’s Closet Online Shop.

R v Jordan is a decision of the Supreme Court of Canada that changed the framework previously used to determine whether an accused was tried within a reasonable time under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, sending a strong message condemning the complacency around lengthy pretrial delays. The nuts and bolts of the decision were to provide hard outer limits: 18 months for one-stage provincial court trials and 30 months for two-stage superior court trials, counted from the date of Crown Counsel charging until the completion of trial. If the process exceeds those time frames, accused persons are presumptively entitled to have their charges stayed for “unreasonable delay”. No exceptions, except where the Crown can demonstrate “exceptional circumstances” or “particularly complex” matters. The decision highlighted that chronic delay or lack of institutional resources such as courtrooms or staff will not amount to “exceptional circumstances.” Tough news for a system that is already deemed maxed and resource poor.

Should you have any questions regarding the consent process, survey participation and/or data collection, you may contact Bethel Lulie at ifrjo@bwss.org.

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Led by BWSS and the IFJROC, this survey questionnaire will assess how the Jordan decision has influenced the choices made by police and the Crown with respect to carrying out investigations and pressing charges, and how this has impacted victims of gender-based violence offences.

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