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Minister for Defence must listen to the concerns expressed by the Women of Honour - Sorca Clarke TD

19 January, 2022 - by Sorca Clarke TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Defence, Sorca Clarke TD, has reiterated her call for a commission of investigation into allegations of sexual assault and harassment in the Defence Forces to be established.

The Women of Honour group will tomorrow meet with the Minister for Defence Simon Coveney.

Teachta Clarke said:

"I want to commend the Women of Honour for their bravery in coming forward to tell their story of our they were treated in the Defence Forces. Sexual harassment and violence of any kind is totally unacceptable and can never be condoned or minimised.

"The Women Of Honour have clearly articulated their view that the Minister for Defence's proposed mechanism of addressing these allegations is inadequate. 

"Any internal review will not have the power to compel witnesses or apportion blame, and I support the survivors’ calls for a commission of investigation to be established. 

"This must include an examination of the specific allegations of wrongdoing, but also the wider mishandling of the women’s complaints; including the bullying, coercion and collusion they say they were subjected to.

“I am deeply disappointed at how these survivors have been treated by the government up to now. They deserve better. 

"I hope that their meeting with the Minister for Defence tomorrow will be a productive one, and that they are listened to and their concerns taken on board.

"There can be no further delays in establishing a proper, independent investigation."

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