Nearly two weeks after a disturbing early-morning encounter on a hotel elevator, local MLA Jessica Littlewood continues to speak up for every woman’s right to feel safe.
 
Earlier this month Littlewood was returning alone to her hotel room after a typically busy Stampede night of speaking with stakeholders. It was about 1:30 a.m. when the Fort Saskatchewan-Vegreville MLA stepped onto an elevator with two strangers.
 
As the elevator arrived at the men’s floor, something happened that left Littlewood feeling the need to defend her own safety.
 
“One of them propositioned me to go back to their room in a quite sexually explicit manner,” she said. “And so I threatened the police on them and then swore a blue streak.” The men left the elevator after Littlewood spoke up, one of them “a little bit worse for wear.”
 
“I was by myself. I didn't know who was awake in the middle of the night. And it was just a really normal sort of day to day thing to do. But then it took a scary turn pretty quickly.”
 
The MLA later shared details of the incident on Twitter, writing “Sexual violence is real. Please help us fix this.”
 
In the days following her upsetting encounter Littlewood has heard “over and over” from women who’ve had similar experiences. What happened on that Calgary elevator is the sort of thing women go through every day, something we all need to recognize isn’t okay, Littlewood said.
 
“I think it's important to shed the light on this sort of thing so that we can help address it together as opposed to trying to keep this stuff silent."
 
Littlewood wonders why the unknown man thought it was okay to say what he did, pointing out that the conversation was far beyond appropriate.
 
“My dad always taught me to say hi to people whether I'm passing them on the sidewalk or getting into the elevator,” she said. “I don't know at what point they were told that it was okay to conduct themselves in that manner. Because I certainly wasn't raised that way.”
 

More Local News

Inter Pipeline still on time and budget after big move

Inter Pipeline’s $3.5-billion petrochemical complex continues to move along smoothly.

St. Albert resident wins $7.9 million on LOTTO 6/49

An Alberta man recently hit the jackpot.

Another massive load heading to Industrial Heartland

A second huge piece of equipment is about to travel on our highways.

15 taken into custody after drug bust

Area police detachments have teamed up in a recent drug bust.

Gibbons schools put on hold and secure

Gibbons School and Landing Trail School had to take precautionary measures.

EIPS hopeful for Sherwood Heights Junior High replacement school

Work on Sherwood Heights Junior High has become a top priority for Elk Island Public Schools.

Made-in-Alberta to potentially invest up to $20 billion in the heartland

Premier Rachel Notley's Made-in-Alberta strategy could have a big payoff in the region.

Super Blood Wolf Moon visible in North America

There will be a spectacular sight in the sky on Sunday (Jan.20).

Speeder caught going 149 km/h on Highway 15 bridge

A man was recently pulled over for excessive speeding in the area.

Bruderheim growing in population

Bruderheim's recent census results showed growth in the town.

DiscoverWestman.com is Westman's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.

Search the Biz Guide

Login