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Woman to head Canada's mounted police

AFP  |  Ottawa 

For the first time in its storied history, a woman has been appointed to lead the (RCMP) on a permanent basis.

announced at the in Regina, on Friday that will succeed Bob Paulson, who announced his retirement last year.

Another woman held those reins on an interim basis for six months from December 2006 to June 2007. But Lucki is the first woman to be named to the post on a permanent basis.

"When she takes her new post this April, she will be the 24th in the RCMP's history and the first woman to serve as in a permanent role," Trudeau told a conference.

"I'm very, very excited about being able to appoint the absolute best person for the job to be of the RCMP, who just happens to be a woman," he said.

Since joining the RCMP at age 20 in 1986, Lucki has been posted across as well as with the in the former

More recently, she was in charge of training cadets.

"I plan to challenge assumptions, seek explanations, and better understand the reasons how we operate," she said.

"This means that no stone will be left unturned and if what we find works, then we carry on until we unearth the issues that need addressing.

"I am confident that together we will meet our on and move forward to continue to modernize our organization."

Lucki's appointment comes as the RCMP is grappling with an underrepresentation of women and sexual harassment within its ranks.

According to the data, only 22 percent of RCMP officers are female.

Outgoing Paulson last year gave an official apology and offered an estimated Can$100 million compensation to settle two sexual harassment class action lawsuits launched by former policewomen.

About 25,000 women who worked for the RCMP since 1974 -- when the force started hiring women -- qualified for the payments.

The new will face calls for higher pay from members who recently won the right to unionize, and will soon have to face a new civilian oversight board.

Lucki will also have to work to improve soured relations with Canada's indigenous communities.

has also tasked the RCMP with improving Canada's cybersecurity and leading efforts to tackle an increase in gangs and gun violence.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, March 10 2018. 01:00 IST