Soldier with PTSD wins human-rights case against Brandon police
A military veteran says he hopes his human-rights complaint against a Manitoba police force, which has recently been settled, will raise awareness about post-traumatic stress disorder and other invisible disabilities.
Master Cpl. Bill Nachuk filed the complaint after officers with the Brandon Police Service removed him from a lounge in April 2011.
Nachuk said he had a service dog with him to help him with his PTSD — and had the certification papers to prove it — but the officers refused to listen to him.
"I was very embarrassed. I was very angry," Nachuk told CBC News.
He said his service dog, Gambler, has been a lifeline for him, and the incident with police set his treatment back.
Earlier this year, the police service offered a settlement of $5,500 but an independent adjudicator turned it down.
The commission says a new offer was put forward and agreed to it, but it is confidential.
"I wasn't going to back down and go lightly when I knew I was in the right," Nachuk said.
Another veteran was turned away from a restaurant in Prince Albert, Sask., in March because he had a service dog for PTSD.
In a statement, the Brandon Police Service said it settled Nachuk's case for "practical" reasons and insisted that his complaint has no merit.
But Nachuk views the outcome differently, calling it a huge victory.
"We do have rights to go and carry on with 'a normal life,'" he said, adding that his complaint was never about money, but about principles.
With files from The Canadian Press