Taxi safety survey finds most Yukon women unsure of where to report violence or harassment

Taxi security survey finds most Yukon ladies not sure of the place to report violence or harassment

A brand new survey from the Yukon Girls’s Coalition finds that almost all victims of sexual or verbal harassment in a Whitehorse cab do not know the way or the place to report it.

That is one in all many main revelations from the primary survey on taxi security carried out within the territory. 

“Individuals do not assume that their data might be both saved secure or responded to appropriately,” says Aja Mason, the government director of the Yukon Standing of Girls Council. 

“They do not imagine that any significant change will come out of reporting.” 

The survey, launched on-line, requested respondents to reply a mixture of a number of choice and open-ended questions on their experiences in Whitehorse cabs. The coalition additionally collected knowledge together with the age, ethnicity and gender identification of their respondents — however didn’t report their names so the survey might keep nameless. 

Over 170 folks responded, a “actually massive” pattern measurement for the Yukon, in response to Mason. The overwhelming majority, 160, of these respondents recognized as ladies. 

Aja Mason, the manager director of the Yukon Standing of Girls Council. (Submitted by Aja Mason)

Fifty-five per cent of respondents didn’t know they may file reviews to Whitehorse bylaw companies in the event that they have been subjected to violence or harassment in a taxi. 

One other 14 per cent say they knew they may report it to bylaw, however did not need to as a result of they “did not really feel it was reportable,” or “nothing is ever carried out.” 

These numbers, the report says, present that the town must take extra motion to “increase public consciousness of the function Bylaw Companies” play in implementing the taxi trade. 

Indigenous ladies face increased danger of violence

One other main discovering from the survey is that Indigenous respondents reported proportionally increased charges of violence, harassment or encounters that made them really feel extra unsafe than their non-Indigenous counterparts, Mason says.

Indigenous ladies reported being harassed at nearly 3 times the speed of non-Indigenous respondents — 39 per cent for Indigenous ladies in comparison with 13 per cent for non-Indigenous. 

Half of all Indigenous respondents say harassment or violence was focused —  nearly 5 occasions that of all different survey respondents. 

Indigenous ladies additionally reported extra instances of sexual assault or harassment in taxis. Thirty-one per cent of all Indigenous respondents say they’d been sexually harassed, in comparison with 14 per cent of non-Indigenous respondents. 

Taxi security is a neighborhood situation that’s disproportionately impacting Indigenous ladies in Whitehorse.”– Taxi Security Report, Yukon Girls’s Coalition

Fourteen per cent of Indigenous respondents reported being sexually touched or assaulted by a taxi driver in comparison with 5 per cent of non-Indigenous respondents. 

The survey additionally provides perception into what sort of remedy Indigenous ladies obtain from drivers. 

They described drivers altering the agreed-to path to make it longer, altering the decide up or drop off location and that driver IDs weren’t displayed. 

“Taxi security is a neighborhood situation that’s disproportionately impacting Indigenous ladies in Whitehorse, and we have to prioritize their well-being in neighborhood security methods,” the report concludes.

‘The bylaw continues to be not reducing the mustard’

This survey builds on the work the Yukon Girls’s Coalition has been doing for years. 

In 2017, they introduced a listing of suggestions to Whitehorse metropolis council after RCMP charged a taxi driver with two counts of sexual assault and one depend of kidnapping. The costs have since been dropped or dismissed by the courts.

A couple of months later, council handed an modification to the Automobile For Rent Bylaw, the doc that regulates how taxis function. It included a number of new modifications, like extending the size that cameras in taxis needed to keep on. 

The report recommends that council tackle taxi security as one in all their strategic priorities and kind a committee to work on the difficulty. (Wayne Vallevand/CBC)

The modification additionally launched free, obligatory sexual assault consciousness and prevention coaching for drivers. Jonna Reaume, coordinator of the Yukon Girls’s Coalition, says drivers accomplished that coaching in 2019. 

Nonetheless, Mason says the issue is not going wherever. 

“The bylaw continues to be not reducing the mustard, so to talk,” Mason says. “Girls are nonetheless experiencing a big quantity of violence, particularly gender based mostly violence.” 

‘We wish them to be secure’

Council ought to now go one step additional and embrace taxi security as one of many metropolis’s strategic priorities, the report says. 

It additionally recommends the formation of a committee to work on taxi security with members from the ladies’s council, in addition to the town and bylaw companies. 

Jonna Reaume, co-author of the report from the Yukon Girls’s Coalition, stated she hopes the suggestions from the report might be applied so all ladies can finally really feel secure in taxis. (Anna Desmarais/CBC)

The report additionally asks for extra modifications to the Automobile For Rent Bylaw, so taxi firms are pressured to create insurance policies for if and when their staff are accused or charged with sexual assault. 

It is also unclear how the town’s bylaw companies information and shops complaints, so the coalition is asking for the division to launch annual reviews. 

“We hope this report … results in taxis being safer for all ladies,” Reaume says.

“We wish them to be secure within the sense that … in case your aunt, your cousin or your sister is taking a taxi dwelling late at evening and the battery of her cellphone is lifeless … that she’s not going to be uncomfortable taking this taxi alone.” 

Myles Dolphin, communications officer for the town of Whitehorse, says bylaw officers will reply to the report after it’s introduced to council on Monday evening.

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