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Third Canadian politician resigns amid sexual misconduct allegations

‘The Canadian political MeToo movement begins’

by Hilary Beaumont
Jan 25 2018, 10:12pm

Canadian Press

Minister of sport and disability Kent Hehr has resigned from cabinet following allegations of sexual harassment that broke late Wednesday night.

He is the third Canadian politician in only two days to resign his position.

Late Wednesday night, a woman accused Hehr of making sexually suggestive remarks to her in an elevator at the Alberta legislature, where he had previously served as a provincial politician.

“So get rid of him,” she challenged Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Twitter.

“Today, I accepted the Honourable Kent Hehr’s resignation from cabinet pending the outcome of the investigation,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a statement Thursday.

“Harassment of any kind is unacceptable and Canadians have a right to live and work in environments free from harassment,” Trudeau said.

“The conversation our society is having is a very important one,” Hehr said in a statement. “I encourage all women who have felt uncomfortable or who have experienced harassment of any kind to continue to come forward. It is never okay.”

'HE WOULD MAKE YOU FEEL UNSAFE'

It’s been a busy week for sexual misconduct allegations in Canadian politics.

On Wednesday, Nova Scotia Progressive Conservative Leader Jamie Baillie resigned after an independent, third-party investigation found he had breached a harassment policy. His resignation was followed Wednesday night by Ontario Progressive Conservative leader Patrick Brown stepping down amid sexual assault allegations.

After the news broke late Wednesday night about Brown, a woman who said she had worked at the Alberta Legislature tweeted that she was told to avoid being in an elevator with Hehr.

“He would make comments. He would make you feel unsafe,” she wrote in a thread on Twitter.

“There is literally no woman who worked in the annex who didn’t experience this. He made verbally sexually suggestive comments to all of us, who in an elevator with me and only me said, ‘You’re yummy.’”

“My story and most of our stories [thankfully] don’t end with assault but they end in fear.”

“He is now a federal cabinet minister,” she continued. “In the government of a man who claims to believe in gender equality. So let’s test that Justin Trudeau. I’m not alone in my experience and I know so many women have experienced this. So get rid of him.”

“The Canadian political MeToo movement begins,” she added.

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