Troubled doctor resigns after allowing sex offenders to guide survivors during military trauma retreat

Troubled doctor resigns after allowing sex offenders to guide survivors during military trauma retreat


Dr. Manuela Joannou resigned and no longer serves as the medical director of the Ontario Veterans and First Aid Trauma Program. This is the public’s outrage at her decision to make registered sex offenders as a companion mentor to a group of sexual assault survivors.

CBC News revealed last week that Joannou failed to tell a group of 12 female first responders and Canadian military veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder who spent six days with a retired soldier in July 2018. In the retreat, the soldier was recently convicted of two different persons. Sexual assault cases.

The seven participants who attended the meeting publicly stated that they felt betrayed, violated and once again insulted by the retired principal Jonathan Hamilton criminals, and expressed their gratitude to Joannou’s face of his decision. Shocked when defending his decision.

Joannou announced on Facebook on Saturday that she will leave the post of medical director, but did not disclose whether she will continue to participate in the operation of Project Trauma Support in another role.

Qiao Annu said: “I admit that I made a mistake and take full responsibility.” “I am sorry that this mistake caused a drastic change, and I wish everyone the best.”

“My most sincere wish to everyone is that everyone will continue on the path of recovery.”

Past participants told CBC News that they would like to know what role Joannou will continue to play as her founder and operating the resort in her property in Perth, Ontario. CBC News has sent a request to Joannou for more information.

Watch | Sexual assault survivor was stunned, and the learning companion tutor was convicted as a sex offender:

Participants in a traumatic recuperation for survivors of sexual assault, including veterans, were shocked to learn that sex offenders served as peer mentors in the program. 3:06

Retired Brigadier General Paul Rutherford resigns

The chairman of the charity’s board of directors also resigned on Saturday.

The retired Brigadier General Paul Rutherford issued an internal letter stating that he was resigning “based on recent media reports on the integrity of the plan.”

Rutherford came under fire for signing a letter with Joannou, which was a response to the original CBC story, which did not apologize for what happened. The letter also said that because the program is confidential, participants should not talk about the program publicly.

Rutherford said in a letter obtained by CBC News: “I apologize for any harm suffered by any program participant.” “I don’t want to cause any painful feelings.”

Rutherford wrote that he personally would never allow convicted sex offenders to become peer mentors. He said he now recommends new screening measures, including criminal background checks.

He wrote: “With deep sympathy and support for victims and survivors of any sexual harassment or abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder or mental injury, I resigned as chairman.”

Director of the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine of the Canadian Army apologizes

Lt.-Col, Head of Rehabilitation Medicine, Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). After the story, Markus Besemann also left the “Project Trauma Support”.

CAF said that since 2016, Besemann has been a volunteer in charities, mainly by holding 2.5 hours of lectures on physical and emotional pain and suffering. CAF said he also advised some of his patients to participate in the program as part of their efforts to cure.

In a statement to CBS News, Besseman said: “I feel very sad to learn that in trying to help those most in need of recovery, we may have made a huge contribution to their suffering.” I want to apologize to those affected. I’m really sorry.”

Besseman said that he has been treating sexual trauma survivors as a clinician for 32 years.

Donors keep in touch with charities

A series of apologies and resignations came days after the charity lost funds from several large donors.

The Canadian Society for Mood Disorders completely cut off contact, and the Canadian Veterans Affairs Bureau said it would no longer provide any support. The Royal Canadian Corps also said that the leaders of the program are shocked by how the situation is handled and will no longer consider future funding.

Female participants supported by the Trauma Project in Perth, Ontario participated in a group activity hugging at the Maze Center. (Hallie Cotnam / CBC)

Another donor, True Patriot Love Foundation, said that the program has helped many people coping with severe trauma, and it will look for ways to continue to support the program.

“I hope True Patriot Love Love can explore some ways to help the program move forward so that it can continue to provide care to those who need it while avoiding the major mistakes involved in your story,” the Chief Executive Officer of True Patriot Love Foundation Officer Nick Booth said in an email to CBC News.

Joannou said that family doctor and emergency doctor Rebecca Van lersel, who is interested in mental health, will take over as the medical director.

“In the next few months, as we listen, reflect and strive to achieve reconciliation, I look forward to regaining the trust of our alumni, potential participants and funders.”

The Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons (CPSO) investigated the complaint and determined in 2019 that it was inappropriate for convicted sex offenders to guide sexual assault survivors among peers.

CPSO stated that it was concerned about Joannou’s decision in this case and advised her to pay attention to her hiring practices in the future.

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