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

Two Nuxalk artists awarded YVR Art Foundation scholarships

Several Nuxalk artists have won the award, some more than once

Convicted animal abuser to return to B.C. court May 21

Catherine Jessica Adams is facing a breach of probation charge

Concerns over democracy as Senate committee votes to nix oil tanker ban

Critics of the Senate’s recommendation to kill Bill C-48 say it goes against popular will

Open casting call issued for Trevor Mack’s first feature-length film

All Indigenous actors, preferably local Chilcotin people, are needed for Portraits From A Fire’s cast

New ferry to B.C.’s central coast sets sail, a year late and $20M over budget

Northern Sea Wolf will cost $76 million when it hits the waters in June

Kelowna toddler suffers cracked skull after fall from balcony

Neighbour who found the two-year-old boy said he has a bump the size of a golf ball on his head

Pipeline protester chimes in on Justin Trudeau’s B.C. fundraising speech

The government purchased the Trans Mountain pipeline and expansion project for $4.5 billion

Canada stripping citizenship from Chinese man over alleged marriage fraud

The move comes amid severely strained relations between Ottawa and Beijing

Nevada court orders former Vancouver man to pay back $21.7M to investors

The commission says Michael Lathigee committed fraud over a decade ago

Support growing for orphaned Okanagan child after father dies in highway crash

Family thanks emergency crews for assistance in traumatic incident

Baby boom seniors putting pressure on B.C. long-term care: report

B.C. leads Canada in growth of dementia, dependence on care

RCMP probe if teen was intentionally hit with ski pole by mystery skier on B.C. mountain

The incident happened on March 20 on Grouse Mountain. Police are urging witnesses to come forward

Roadside device to weed out THC can’t detect impairment, B.C. lawyer says

‘This fact alone is likely to have serious implications for Canadians’ Charter Rights,’ lawyer Sarah Leamon warns

B.C. firefighters rescue frozen dog from ice

The fire crew found a dog stuck in the at Lake Paul on May 20

Most Read