Women accusing Just for Laughs founder of sexual misconduct seeking leave to appeal to SCC

Gilbert Rozon was accused of sexually harassing or assaulting at least 20 girls and women

Women accusing Just for Laughs founder of sexual misconduct seeking leave to appeal to SCC

Les Courageuses, a group of women accusing Gilbert Rozon, founder of the Just for Laughs comedy festival, of sexual misconduct, say they plan to take their case to the Supreme Court of Canada.

In a news release dated Jan. 8, the group said that it was disappointed by the unfavourable ruling of the Quebec Court of Appeal, which had overturned the Quebec Superior Court’s decision to authorize the class action filed by the group.

“Two out of three judges of the Court of Appeal reasoned that the proposed class action was not the appropriate procedural vehicle and that the victims should rather institute individual lawsuits,” said the news release.

Justice Dominique Bélanger, who would have dismissed the appeal and allowed the class action to move forward, dissented.

Les Courageuses first sought to file the class action in 2017, back when the #MeToo Movement had begun to gain traction in Canada. The group accused Rozon of sexually harassing or assaulting at least 20 girls and women from 1982 to 2016, over a period of 34 years.

“It is clear, in our opinion, that the victims currently known only represent the tip of the iceberg,” said a news release from that time. “This is why we have chosen the path of collective action to obtain justice.”

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