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CBC Live Online - An Interview with Theo Fleury

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Theo Fleury joins us to speak about a new movement he is launching aimed at strengthening Canada's laws against those who sexually abuse children. (FILE: 2009 THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette)

Theoren Fleury, the former number 14 for the Calgary Flames, has a Stanley Cup, an Olympic Gold medal and a World Junior Championship to his credit. He has played in over 1,100 NHL games, with 455 regular season goals and 633 assists.

But Fleury has also struggled with drug and alcohol addictions as he fought to deal with the pain of years of sexual assault by former hockey coach Graham James.

Today the hockey player turned activist has pledged to walk from Toronto to Ottawa next May to raise awareness about childhood sexual abuse and to push for harsher penalties for offenders. The Victor Walk will start at the Child Abuse Monument in Toronto and end on the steps of Parliament Hill.

This comes in light of news earlier this week about a Manitoba court of appeal hearing about whether to extend James's two-year sentence, the result of a conviction in March for repeatedly sexually abusing Fleury and his cousin Todd Holt in the 1980s and 90s. The Crown had asked for a 6-year sentence for James.  Holt, in a joint statement with Fleury released after the March trial called the sentence "nothing short of a national travesty" and many Canadians agreed with him.

The three-judge appeal panel in Manitoba has reserved its decision on James' future for a later date, but no timeline has been given. 

Currently, James is already eligible for parole but according to the National Parole Board, he has not made any applications to ask for it.

Come join us for a special edition of CBC Live Online Thursday night at 7 p.m. Eastern/4 p.m. Pacific.

We'll be speaking to Theo Fleury and taking your questions and comments about his new movement, and coping with the aftermath of sexual abuse. Joining us also will be Ellen Campbell, President, CEO and founder of the Canadian Center for Abuse Awareness.

Ask your questions live on webcam by clicking on the green button below!

Tags: Community, Live Online

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