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Villa Maria student says police warned her about possible harassment over short skirt

Click to play video: 'Are Montreal police practicing victim blaming?'
Are Montreal police practicing victim blaming?
WATCH ABOVE: A student at Villa Maria High School says Montreal police went too far in their sexual assault awareness campaign. The 16-year-old claims officers commented on the length of her skirt, which is part of her school uniform. As Kelly Greig reports, the teen feels she is being victim blamed – Sep 29, 2016

A student at Villa Maria High School says Montreal police (SPVM) officers went too far in their sexual assault awareness campaign.

Micheala Fleming, 16,  says she was approached by an officer outside the metro who told her the school uniform she was wearing was too provocative.

“Quick into the conversation she turned to my friend Lydia and said well look how short your skirts are,” she told Global News. “[The officer] said I can expect to be harassed when Villa girls roll their skirts.”

READ MORE: Record highs in 2015 for reports of sexual crimes in Montreal metro

Fleming said her skirt was rolled up, a common practice among students at the Notre-Dame-de-Grâce high school.

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“When you first get a skirt it’ll be really long, when I first got mine it was all the way down to my knees,” she said. “A lot of girls don’t feel comfortable with that. They don’t roll their skirts to get attention they roll their skirts to be comfortable.”

Officers were at Villa-Maria metro station last Thursday as part of the “Je Denonce” campaign against sexual harassment on public transit.

WATCH BELOW: New campaign takes aim at sexual harassment in Montreal metro

Click to play video: 'New campaign takes aim at sexual harassment in Montreal metro'
New campaign takes aim at sexual harassment in Montreal metro

“If there’s an adjustment to be done we will do it,” said Inspector Carole Lalonde with the SPVM’s metro division. “Our organization does not caution these type of remarks.”

Fleming says she feels this is a case of victim blaming and is even more shocked it happened with her school uniform.

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“They were only stopping Villa students,” she alleges. “They weren’t stopping men they weren’t stopping older women. Just my population.”

A representative from Villa Maria was not available for an interview.

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