Arts Department to be invited to Oireachtas Committee to discuss allegations of sexual harassment in the sector - Peadar Tóibín TD
Cathaoirleach of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Peadar Tóibín TD has stated that he wishes to invite the Department of Culture, The Arts Council, Equity, the actor’s union, and the Chair of the Board of the Gate Theatre to attend the committee as soon as possible to discuss issues related to allegations of sexual harassment in the Arts sector.
Speaking this evening Teachta Tóibín said;
“The Department of Culture, Arts and the Gaeltacht spends citizen’s money directly and indirectly on a large number of cultural, heritage and language organisations.
“The Minister and the Department cannot micro-manage each organisation, however they do have a moral responsibility to ensure that the conditions exist that ensure workers do not have to tolerate sexual harassment, and where perpetrators can be held to account.
“In the light of serious allegations questions arise over sexual harassment within the sector. In order to achieve justice its really important that these allegations are investigated comprehensively now by the relevant authorities.
“It is also important for the women and men who are victims elsewhere that justice is done to help them find the confidence to challenge such behaviour in their own working lives.
“Sexual harassment thrives in an atmosphere of unaccountability. It persists in organisations where victims feel powerless without the structures to achieve justice. We must investigate and create the legal and cultural conditions for that accountability to flourish.
“I am talking to the committee members at the moment in order to organise this meeting in the next 10 days.”