One of the first Indigenous women to join the RCMP in Manitoba is the lead plaintiff in a proposed class-action lawsuit that alleges systemic racism within the force.

Margorie Hudson alleges in a statement of claim filed last week in Federal Court that she and other racialized employees were subjected to racism by colleagues and management.

It says Hudson joined the force in 1979 as a so-called special native constable and then as a regular constable, but left in 2009 when she could no longer endure the discrimination.

None of the allegations has been proven in court and a spokeswoman for the RCMP says it would be inappropriate to comment as the matter is before the court.

The statement of claim alleges the RCMP breached Hudson’s right to serve in an environment free of discrimination, that the force treated racialized members differently and she received unequal pay, training and promotion opportunities.

The lawsuit says public scrutiny and recent admissions by RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki that systemic racism exists within the force made it safer for Hudson to take action now.

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