What is considered institutional sexual abuse?

If sexual abuse has been committed against someone who is owed a duty of care by a public or private institution, it can be considered institutional sexual abuse. The abuse can be committed by someone in a position of institutional leadership or another person receiving the services of the institution. Although the institution may not have committed the sexual abuse or known about it, if their negligent actions or inaction caused or contributed to the circumstances that allowed it to take place, the institution may share liability.

Some examples of institutions where cases of sexual abuse have taken place include:

  • Residential schools;
  • Foster homes and group homes;
  • Day schools;
  • Daycare;
  • Hospitals;
  • Nursing homes;
  • Religious centres;
  • Youth sport activities and clubs;
  • Seniors residences;
  • Assisted living centres;
  • Youth corrections facilities;
  • Jails and prisons.