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

VIDEO: North Island Bantam Eagles still undefeated, dominate Oceanside Generals in Port Hardy

Who can stop the North Island Bantam Eagles? The answer so far this season is, well, no one.

VIDEO: North Island Atom Eagles tie Victoria Ice Hawks, fall in rematch

The North Island Atom Eagles will be back in league play action at home in January.

Strong winds expected to hit north, west Vancouver Island: Environment Canada

Environment Canada said southeast winds will reach speeds of 70 to 90 kilometres per hour

Town of Port McNeill hesitates on replacing harbour’s dock and ramp

“The danger is the longer we hold on to awarding the bid, the closer we get to the tourist season”

It’s the last day to vote in B.C.’s referendum on electoral reform

Ballots must now be dropped off in person to meet the deadline of 4:30 p.m.

VIDEO: North Island Bantam Eagles still undefeated, dominate Oceanside Generals in Port Hardy

Who can stop the North Island Bantam Eagles? The answer so far this season is, well, no one.

Minister appoints former CIRB chair to resolve Canada Post labour dispute

Postal workers engaged in weeks of rotating walkouts

B.C. man linked to human remains probe to stand trial on unrelated assault case

Curtis Wayne Sagmoen will appear on all three Vernon matters this week

Vancouver Island First Nation holds ceremony over carving shed, Big House project moves forward

“We are hoping to make those final decisions to move forward with … the Big House,” said GNN.

B.C. lumber industry trade mission still has high hopes for China

Forests Minister Doug Donaldson cut short trip after Japan, Korea stops

North Island Peewee Eagles dethrone Powell River Kings at Cruickshank Arena in Port Hardy

With the gritty win, the Eagles improved their tier two division league play record to 3-4-1.

Tri-Port Midget Wild’s Jessica Wadhams scores twice in ‘Wild’ win over Campbell River Hurricanes

The Wild will be back in action at the Don Cruickshank Memorial Arena in Port Hardy on Feb. 9.

Lawyer for Chinese exec detained by Canada says it’s ‘inconceivable’ she would flee

Meng Wanzhou was detained at the request of the U.S. during a layover at the Vancouver airport

Omar Khadr to ask for Canadian passport to travel, permission to speak to sister

He spent years in U.S. detention at Guantanamo Bay after he was caught when he was 15

Most Read