September 22, 2018

Winnipeg
8° C, Partly cloudy

Full Forecast

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

Cabinet minister took complaint up ladder, found 'comfort' in way it was handled

Eileen Clarke said she discussed the issue with her superiors and with human resources. (Justin Samanski-Langille / Free Press files)</p></p>

Eileen Clarke said she discussed the issue with her superiors and with human resources. (Justin Samanski-Langille / Free Press files)

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 15/2/2018 (218 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

A Manitoba cabinet minister said Thursday she felt "great comfort" when the premier assured her a misconduct complaint from an individual at the legislature was being dealt with.

Manitoba Indigenous and Northern Affairs Minister Eileen Clarke did not provide any details about the complainant, the allegation or the accuser, but said the individual approached her.

"As a cabinet minister, it was brought to my attention and rightfully so," Clarke told the Free Press. "Individuals have to know that there are places where they can go that they’ll be taken seriously."

Clarke said she discussed the issue with her superiors and with human resources.

Get the full story.
No credit card required. Cancel anytime.

Join free for 60 days

After that, pay as little as $0.99 per month for the best local news coverage in Manitoba.

 

Already a subscriber?

Log in

Join free for 60 days

 

Already a subscriber?

Log in

Subscribers Log in below to continue reading,
not a subscriber? Create an account to start a 60 day free trial.

Log in Create your account

Your free trial has come to an end.

We hope you have enjoyed your trial! To continue reading, we recommend our Read Now Pay Later membership. Simply add a form of payment and pay only 27¢ per article.

For unlimited access to the best local, national, and international news and much more, try an All Access Digital subscription:

Thank you for supporting the journalism that our community needs!

Your free trial has come to an end.

We hope you have enjoyed your trial! To continue reading, we recommend our Read Now Pay Later membership. Simply add a form of payment and pay only 27¢ per article.

For unlimited access to the best local, national, and international news and much more, try an All Access Digital subscription:

Thank you for supporting the journalism that our community needs!

We hope you have enjoyed your free trial!

To continue reading, select a plan below:

All Access Digital

Introductory pricing*

99¢

per month

  • Unlimited online reading and commenting
  • Daily newspaper replica e-Edition
  • News Break - our award-winning iOS app
  • Exclusive perks & discounts
Continue

Read Now Pay Later

Pay

27¢

per article

  • Commitment-free
  • Cancel anytime
  • Only pay for what you read
  • Refunds available
Continue

*Introductory pricing schedule for 12 month: $0.99/month plus tax for first 3 months, $5.99/month for months 4 - 6, $10.99/month for months 7 - 9, $13.99/month for months 10 - 12. Standard All Access Digital rate of $16.99/month begins after first year.

We hope you have enjoyed your free trial!

To continue reading, select a plan below:

Read Now Pay Later

Pay

27¢

per article

  • Commitment-free
  • Cancel anytime
  • Only pay for what you read
  • Refunds available
Continue

All Access Digital

Introductory pricing*

99¢

per month

  • Unlimited online reading and commenting
  • Daily newspaper replica e-Edition
  • News Break - our award-winning iOS app
  • Exclusive perks & discounts
Continue

Mon to Sat Delivery

Pay

$34.36

per month

  • Includes all benefits of All Access Digital
  • 6-day delivery of our award-winning newspaper
Continue

*Introductory pricing schedule for 12 month: $0.99/month plus tax for first 3 months, $5.99/month for months 4 - 6, $10.99/month for months 7 - 9, $13.99/month for months 10 - 12. Standard All Access Digital rate of $16.99/month begins after first year.

We hope you have enjoyed your free trial!

To continue reading, select a plan below:

All Access Digital

Introductory pricing*

99¢

per month

  • Unlimited online reading and commenting
  • Daily newspaper replica e-Edition
  • News Break - our award-winning iOS app
  • Exclusive perks & discounts
Continue

Read Now Pay Later

Pay

27¢

per article

  • Commitment-free
  • Cancel anytime
  • Only pay for what you read
  • Refunds available
Continue

*Introductory pricing schedule for 12 month: $0.99/month plus tax for first 3 months, $5.99/month for months 4 - 6, $10.99/month for months 7 - 9, $13.99/month for months 10 - 12. Standard All Access Digital rate of $16.99/month begins after first year.

We hope you have enjoyed your free trial!

To continue reading, select a plan below:

Read Now Pay Later

Pay

27¢

per article

  • Commitment-free
  • Cancel anytime
  • Only pay for what you read
  • Refunds available
Continue

All Access Digital

Introductory pricing*

99¢

per month

  • Unlimited online reading and commenting
  • Daily newspaper replica e-Edition
  • News Break - our award-winning iOS app
  • Exclusive perks & discounts
Continue

*Introductory pricing schedule for 12 month: $0.99/month plus tax for first 3 months, $5.99/month for months 4 - 6, $10.99/month for months 7 - 9, $13.99/month for months 10 - 12. Standard All Access Digital rate of $16.99/month begins after first year.

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 15/2/2018 (218 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

A Manitoba cabinet minister said Thursday she felt "great comfort" when the premier assured her a misconduct complaint from an individual at the legislature was being dealt with.

Manitoba Indigenous and Northern Affairs Minister Eileen Clarke did not provide any details about the complainant, the allegation or the accuser, but said the individual approached her.

"As a cabinet minister, it was brought to my attention and rightfully so," Clarke told the Free Press. "Individuals have to know that there are places where they can go that they’ll be taken seriously."

Clarke said she discussed the issue with her superiors and with human resources.

"I don’t know what disciplinary action exactly was taken, that’s confidential," she said. "But I do know that it was dealt with.

"And I had the opportunity at one point, I just asked (Premier Brian Pallister) if he was aware, and he made it very clear that he was. And I was very satisfied that the issue that I had taken forward on behalf of someone else was not only recognized, but that it was being dealt with and I found great comfort in that."

On Wednesday, Pallister responded to questions from reporters about whether he was aware of any sexual harassment or misconduct complaints that had been made against a member of his government.

He acknowledged two separate allegations had landed on his desk since becoming premier after the April 2016 provincial election. Both complaints were dealt with to the complainants' satisfaction, he said.

Clarke wouldn't say whether the complaint she advanced came from someone working in her office. She said, however, that she isn't sure why the person chose to approach her.

"I never asked that question, but I felt good about it that they did," she said. "I think that’s what’s important. I think individuals that are struggling or have been treated badly with any type of harassment, I think they need to know that there is people that they can go to and be respected because I understand the vulnerability of it.

"As women, whether it’s municipal government or provincial government, we are a small group compared to our male colleagues."

Clarke was elected as the MLA for Agassiz in 2016. Before that, she served eight years as the mayor of Gladstone and was an active member in the Association of Manitoba Municipalities, according to her website.

Clarke said she's noticing a generational shift in politics, where behaviour that people formerly got away with — like "making blond jokes and making jokes about weight" — is no longer being tolerated.

"There was so much of it in my early years as a young woman and even as an adult, and now more of an elderly woman. It’s just not funny anymore. It’s not a joke," she said. "People have to be responsible for what they say and they have to be responsible for their actions."

Wednesday, Pallister said provincial politics is "no longer an old boy's club."

"I’ve done everything I can and continue to work at it to advance the roles of women in our province, to strengthen the responsibilities that we have to relate to each other as people," he said. "So we have to change that culture. The old culture of locker-room talk in the caucus is gone.

"I’m an affectionate guy. Hugging and touching someone who wants to be touched... who needs a human touch — you wouldn’t want to eliminate that from our relationships with one another. But unwanted touching of other people is not on."

The premier also noted that anyone making a misconduct complaint does not have to worry about their career.

"Never will there be negative consequences for anyone who raises a concern in terms of their career advancement, in terms of reprisals against them. That’s not acceptable," Pallister said. "We must cultivate a culture of openness around dealing with these issues."

jessica.botelho@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @_jessbu

Jessica Botelho-Urbanski
Legislature reporter

Jessica Botelho-Urbanski covers the Manitoba Legislature for the Winnipeg Free Press.

Read full biography

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

History

Updated on Thursday, February 15, 2018 at 7:08 PM CST: Updates story

You can comment on most stories on The Winnipeg Free Press website. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective January 2015.