Skip to main content

The Federal Court has approved to a $900-million agreement that will settle multiple class-action lawsuits by survivors of sexual harassment and assault in the military.

The federal government agreed in July to pay $800-million for members of the Canadian Armed Forces and $100-million for another class of employees of the Department of National Defence to settle six overlapping cases filed in recent years.

The lawsuits made claims about sexual harassment, gender discrimination and sexual assault.

The Liberals began by fighting the lawsuits in late 2017, but reversed course weeks later in early 2018 to begin settlement talks.

The judgment released on Monday afternoon says most, but not all, of the members of the classes in the lawsuits wanted the deal approved by the court.

Justice Simon Fothergill, in his ruling, agreed the settlement should be approved, but wrote that such a deal is “inevitably a compromise” that is “unlikely to give all parties precisely what they want.”

In July, when the settlement was announced, lawsuit members were told they would be eligible for between $5,000 and $55,000.

A further $100,000 each could go to people subjected to exceptional harm, such as those who suffered post-traumatic stress disorder from the way they were treated and were denied benefits for the related disability.

The settlement also calls for an external review of existing anti-harassment programs and revisions to how the government deals with disability benefits for survivors of sexual assault or harassment.

Our Morning Update and Evening Update newsletters are written by Globe editors, giving you a concise summary of the day’s most important headlines. Sign up today.

Follow related authors and topics

Authors and topics you follow will be added to your personal news feed in Following.

Interact with The Globe