On September 22, 2021, the Province of Nova Scotia was given notice of an impending action against the Halifax Regional Centre for Education (the “HRCE”) arising from years of sexual abuse perpetrated by long-time employee and elementary school teacher, Jaddus Joseph Poirier, against a minor student.
The legal action was filed with the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia on November 25, 2021 alleging negligence and breach of fiduciary duty against the HRCE for their inaction while a student under their care was exploited and abused by Mr. Poirier in his role as a teacher. It is further alleged that the HRCE facilitated years of abuse by placing this teacher in a position of trust and authority over young students and failing to monitor their employee when concerning signs of abuse should have been noticed.
To date, the HRCE has not responded to the Plaintiff’s legal action and the deadline for such a response has now passed.
“We are committed to promoting access to justice for victims of abuse and holding institutions accountable when they enable predatory behaviour, particularly when a position of trust is exploited against society’s most vulnerable,” said Raymond Wagner, Q.C., the Plaintiff’s lawyer. “It is our strong view that legal actions of this kind help serve as a deterrent to inadequate supervision and send a clear message that schoolboards must take seriously their obligations to protect young students.”
Joseph Poirier was one of two teachers charged with sexual assault following the Operation Apollo investigation, which was launched after former victims of Mr. Poirier came forward. Michael McNutt, another former teacher, was also charged following this investigation.
Wagners can be reached toll-free at 1-800-465-8794 or by email at [email protected].
1869 Upper Water Street
Suite PH 301, Historic Properties
Halifax, NS B3J 1S9
Telephone: 902-425-7330 or 1-800-465-8794
Email: [email protected]