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Retired army couple information human rights grievance in opposition to N.S. yacht membership


A retired army couple has filed a human rights grievance in opposition to a Nova Scotia yacht membership. 

The boys say the LaHave River Yacht Membership discriminated in opposition to them in keeping with sexual orientation and on psychological incapacity.

The membership says the accusations are false and it intends to contest them. 

Invoice Nickerson and Richard MacLeod served within the Canadian Forces on more than one excursions of Afghanistan. MacLeod additionally served in Pakistan. 

The couple retired and moved to Nova Scotia in 2017. They purchased a ship, after which a house, subsequent to the yacht membership. 

The LaHave River Yacht Membership is correct beside the couple’s house at the river. (Jon Tattrie/CBC)

“We knew that it helped our PTSD and it used to be a super leisure factor to do, transferring to Nova Scotia,” Nickerson advised CBC Information. 

They joined the yacht membership and MacLeod used to be quickly volunteering at the govt. He served as vice-commodore at one level, however issues soured remaining 12 months. 

“Section method during the season remaining 12 months, in July, I began noticing adjustments. I used to be beginning to realize other folks making feedback in entrance of me. Derogatory feedback proper out in public, proper the place I used to be sitting in entrance of everybody else, about being homosexual.”

Participants allegedly mentioned “is it a boy or a lady?” a couple of workforce member, in addition to the usage of a homophobic slur. MacLeod objected. 

Two uniformed soldiers ride on a tank with Santa Claus.
MacLeod rides with Santa Claus and every other soldier all the way through a Christmas supply amid Operation Medusa in Afghanistan in 2006. (Submitted via Richard MacLeod)

After that, MacLeod and Nickerson say other folks began asking invasive questions on their psychological well being and wondering their army provider. 

“Since then, we’ve got had individuals throwing rubbish on our belongings and throughout our ditch,” MacLeod mentioned. “We had individuals urinating within the ditch proper beside the home, we had a member that used to be regularly bringing their canine onto our belongings to do its trade.”

The chief staff on the membership declined to do an interview, however Richard Foy, the membership’s commodore, emailed CBC Information to mention a legal professional has been retained and the allegations can be contested.

“We’ve got two individuals who had behaved badly a large number of instances and their club used to be terminated in keeping with self-discipline procedures in our charter,” he mentioned. “They’ve accused the membership of many stuff, none of which might be true, and we’re having a look ahead to having the ability to set the file immediately with the human rights fee.”

A young man in a military uniform gazes at the camera under a shelter of leaves.
Invoice Nickerson used to be deployed with the infantry on two Afghanistan missions. Right here, the corporal is pictured at a ahead running base in Belanday. (Submitted via Invoice Nickerson)

Nickerson mentioned he attempted to introduce a code of behavior in keeping with one utilized by Sail Nova Scotia on the membership’s annual basic assembly, however they wouldn’t pay attention his proposal. 

“We do not reside within the Fifties anymore,” Nickerson mentioned. “We are living in 2022.”

In Would possibly, MacLeod and Nickerson have been advised they would been suspended for a minimum of a 12 months.

The membership returned their charges and would possibly not release their boat. It is on dry land whilst they are attempting to discover a non-public approach to get it into the water, which might value 1000’s of greenbacks. 

MacLeod mentioned he confronted anti-gay harassment within the army, however felt he needed to reside with it. 

“The yacht membership gave us an overly transparent message. If we discuss out, we are going to be punished. However I am talking out anyway,” he mentioned. 

“The most productive result can be that we are allowed to turn into individuals once more, and the membership is in a position to be triumphant, and that individuals can revel in themselves over there, even supposing they are homosexual, and no longer be bullied or stressed.” 

The human rights fee is predicted to imagine their case later this 12 months. 

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