Nova Scotia justice minister steps down after domestic violence comments

HALIFAX — Nova Scotia Justice Minister Brad Johns has resigned, one day after he made comments downplaying the severity of domestic violence.

Premier Tim Houston announced the resignation tonight, saying domestic violence is an issue his government takes very seriously.

On Thursday, Johns disputed a public inquiry's finding that domestic violence is an epidemic and said drugs and gun violence are more serious problems.

His comments came on the anniversary of the 2020 Nova Scotia mass shooting, which led to an inquiry that recommended treating domestic violence as an epidemic.

Johns had apologized Thursday after Houston corrected his minister and told reporters that addressing domestic violence is a priority for his government.

Several organizations that assist women in the province today denounced his comments, and opposition politicians had called on him to resign.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 19, 2024.

The Canadian Press