Timely access to S.A.N.E. Program for Grand Manan residents

Justice Minister and Attorney General Andrea Anderson-Mason has announced there will be an air transport service for Grand Manan, to give "timely access" to services for victims of sexual assault on the Island.

CTV Atlantic's Laura Brown reports on Twitter the service will be provided Atlantic Charters, the company that already provides air ambulance service from Grand Manan.

Anderson-Mason says, "prior to this, a person who was sexually assaulted in the evening had to wait all night to take the ferry the following day. The victim could not take a shower, change clothes, brush their teeth or go to the bathroom. Then, after a ferry trip, the victim had to drive to Saint John to undergo the sexual assault forensic medical examination."

Brown reports victims can now go to the Grand Manan Hospital and request to get air lifted to the Saint John Regional Hospital so they can access the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (S.A.N.E.) program.

According to Anderson-Mason, 72 individuals in the Saint John area used the S.A.N.E. program over the last fiscal year. 

The air transportation service from Grand Manan was sparked by a situation last fall where two areas of the province didn't have access to the sexual assault services.

The province says the Attorney General spoke on behalf of Health Minister Ted Flemming.

(With files from CTV Atlantic's Laura Brown)