Heritage Minister Melanie Joly addresses the media after two meetings to discuss harassment in the film, TV and theatre worlds in Toronto on Wednesday, January 17, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

Heritage Minister wants zero tolerance for harassment in entertainment industry

Heritage Minister Melanie Joly had two meetings to discuss harassment in the film, TV and theatre worlds

Heritage Minister Melanie Joly says she wants zero tolerance for harassment when it comes to federal grants and contributions for the entertainment industry.

Joly had two meetings with representatives from Canada’s entertainment industry Wednesday to discuss how to curb harassment and ensure a safe environment.

The first meeting, hosted by the Professional Association of Canadian Theatres (PACT) and the Canadian Actors’ Equity Association, focused on the performing arts sector.

The second meeting, hosted by the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists (ACTRA), focused on the film and television sector.

“I’ve asked my department to make sure that our grants and contributions are linked to making sure that there’s zero tolerance for harassment in workplaces in our arts and cultural sector,” Joly told reporters after the second meeting concluded late Wednesday afternoon.

“We’re looking at different solutions right now, may they be a code of conduct or different types of solutions to make sure ultimately that people are much more well protected and ultimately that there is much more of a responsibility on the part of people in charge of workplaces to make sure that people are kept safe.”

Related: Female MPs unsure what #MeToo movement means for Parliament Hill: survey

Several Canadian entertainment organizations have come together in a string of meetings over the past couple of months to discuss ways to make a cultural change and prevent and deal with sexual misconduct.

The stage and screen industries have been grappling with a wave of sexual misconduct allegations since Harvey Weinstein was first accused in October.

Joly said she’s requested a review of Canadian Heritage funding policies to ensure that organizations receiving funding promote safe and harassment-free workplaces.

The federal government is committed to ensuring there’s diversity and inclusion in workplaces and within society, she added, noting initiatives being made on that front at Telefilm Canada and other organizations.

“The past months have been difficult for the arts and cultural sector; we know that from the beginning of the #MeToo movement to the different allegations that we heard in the theatre sector recently,” Joly said.

“But now while there is awareness about this issue, people are in action mode — and that’s why from the actors to the writers to the directors to the producers, people are committed to making sure that there are solutions and that people in this country, women and men, can work in a safe environment.”

In November, representatives from 16 entertainment organizations on this side of the border committed to four steps, including “enacting an industry-wide code of conduct.”

Related: Hollywood reacts to Weinstein harassment claims

David Sparrow, president of ACTRA National, said they’ll be meeting again in the next week or so to try to hone their proposals and send them out.

“We’re hoping that by the middle of February we’ll have a code that people can begin to sign on to,” Sparrow said.

Victoria Ahearn, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Greyhound cleared to end routes in northern B.C., Vancouver Island

Company says nine routes have dropped 30% in ridership in last five years

How the provincial budget will play out in northwestern B.C.

Price of gasoline to rise and expect MSP premiums to disppear

NDP budget offers no way to pay for new programs: Ellis Ross

MLA highly critical of government’s abandonment of major projects

New hospital cost to taxpayers still unknown

Ellis to probe budget estimates: “I’m still not convinced it will actually go ahead”

Ross is counting on Wilkinson to stick to his promise to fight for the north

Skeena BC Liberal MLA Ellis Ross is counting on newly-elected BC Liberal… Continue reading

VIDEO: Top 10 B.C. budget highlights

The NDP is focusing on childcare, affordable housing and speeding up the elimination of MSP premiums

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Questions raised over B.C. NDP’s childcare budget plan

Advocates concerned how to fill 22,000 new spaces for early childhood educators

B.C. family first to receive reimbursement for life-altering arthritis drug

Effective medication used to treat rare form of juvenile arthritis costs $19,000 a month

IIO: Kamloops RCMP did not have to report shooting

The IIO is not investigating an officer-involved shooting that occurred in Kamloops in 2017

No smoke alarm, faulty cord contributed to fatal B.C. fire

Faulty electric cord and power source connected to space heater believed to have caused flames

Walmart partners online grocery service to bring Vancouver home delivery

Move expands upon similar efforts announced last November to grow home delivery service

BC Wine Institute to take legal action against Alberta

The BC Wine Institute to seek injunction to protect B.C. wineries from Alberta wine ban

BC BUDGET: Tobacco tax hike may light up black market in smokes

NDP government adds another 56 cents per pack as of April 1

Most Read