Justice minister Andrew Parsons has announced plans to introduce new legislation to help victims of revenge pornography and the non-consensual distribution of intimate images.

The new legislation will establish new civil consequences, in addition to offenses already listed in the Criminal Code involving the non-consensual distribution of intimate images. According to government, it will offer an alternate means of protection to those who have had private and sensitive intimate images shared without their consent, by pursuing the matter themselves in court.

The new law will allow victims to sue in civil court to hold a person accountable for distributing intimate images without their consent. The act will create a mechanism to allow for action to stop the image from being shared and address the removal of the image from the internet. A lawsuit may result in an order for the payment of damages and other orders the court considers appropriate including an injunction to stop further victimization.

 “When an intimate image of a person is shared without their consent, the consequences can be devastating,” says Parsons. “For the victim, it is humiliating, embarrassing and, in some cases, life altering. With this legislation, we will do more to protect people’s privacy and to prevent this type of victimization.”

NTV’s Jodi Cooke is covering the story and will have more at 6 on the NTV Evening Newshour.