Open letter to City of Iqaluit and RCMP

“I am appalled”


At between 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 14, 2015, I heard someone on my deck, but I hadn’t heard a knock on the door.

So, I went outside to see who it was.

There was a man on my deck. He was very intoxicated. He said that we had gone to primary school together. Although I didn’t recognize him, I invited him to sit down on a lawn chair and we spent some time talking.

After about half an hour, it was clear that he wasn’t going to leave. He was getting physical with me; holding my hand, giving me hugs and kuniks, and asking for sex.

I could feel how strong he was when he hugged me. He kept whispering in my ear how much he liked me. I was scared.

I offered to get him a cup of coffee and darted into the house.

I poured a cup of coffee and put it in the microwave.

Then I dialed 979-4422, the City of Iqaluit Emergency Dispatch Line, to get help.

I explained my situation to the operator, but he said I had to call 979-1111 to reach the RCMP.

I dialed 979-1111. There was no answer. I dialed 979-4422 again.

The same operator answered so I told him that there was no answer when I called the RCMP. He took my name, phone number, and house number, and agreed to contact the RCMP.

I took the coffee outside feeling relieved that the RCMP were being alerted.

The man on my deck was drunk to the point of being incoherent, but he was happy. He was asking for sex, but he wasn’t touching me inappropriately. I didn’t know if it would stay that way or go further.

The phone rang a few minutes later and I went back into the house. I was very surprised to find myself speaking to the RCMP.

They needed more information before responding to my call. They wanted to know the man’s name and what he was wearing.

While I was on the phone answering the RCMP’s questions, the man let himself into my house. When I finished on the phone and went back to the door — there he was sitting on a chair in the porch.

When the RCMP finally arrived and took the man outside, one of the officers stayed behind to ask what had happened. Toward the end of my story the officer cut me off to ask, “Do you want to press charges?”

For what? For hanging out on my deck? For excessive kuniks? He had been asking me for sex — but he didn’t do anything.

I told the officer I didn’t want to press charges. They took the man away. End of story.

Except — the more I think about it — the scarier it is that the City of Iqaluit Emergency Dispatch wouldn’t take my first call.

It seems to me that if a woman, or anyone, calls the City of Iqaluit emergency dispatch scared for her sexual safety, dispatch must take the call.

Once the RCMP receive information from the City of Iqaluit emergency dispatch, they must respond immediately instead of calling the person in distress for more details.

I am appalled.

(Name withheld by request)

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