Legislative Report (4 April 2007)

The Carriere Scandal Grows

The NDP’s Murdoch Carriere scandal continues. Murdoch Carriere is the buddy of the NDP government who was fired for harassment and convicted of assault. Carriere was awarded $275,000 plus a big to-up in his pension by the NDP government – while the nine women he assaulted received about $15,000 each.

In a statement written by one of Carriere’s nine victims, it was revealed in Tuesday’s question period that high level managers knew about harassment allegations against Murdoch Carriere as early as 1994.

The victim’s statement begins by recalling the first incident of harassment and how she was treated by Murdoch Carriere. The victim immediately reported the incident to the Deputy Minister’s office, the Deputy Minister himself, and the Associate Deputy Minister. The response was, “Oh, that’s just Murdoch.” When a second incident was reported to the Associate Deputy Minister, he laughed about it and again repeated, “That’s just Murdoch.”

Over the course of eight years, the nine victims of harassment went to Deputy Ministers, Associate Deputy Ministers, supervisors, their union, NDP Ministers and even Premier Calvert for help. NO ONE addressed the situation until an independent report was leaked to the media and the Official Opposition Saskatchewan Party questioned the NDP government in early 2003. This is the NDP’s zero tolerance policy on harassment?

Now the Public Service Commission Minister, Pat Atkinson, says maybe improvements to anti-harassment legislation are needed. The legislation and policies already in place are clear. What is needed is a government that has the will to enforce the policies and legislation. And a mechanism to thoroughly examine this situation and take steps to ensure this never happens again.

The Official Opposition has asked the NDP to commit to using the powers of the Legislative Assembly to address this scandal and finally get some answers. An all-party Legislative committee can call on witnesses, review legal opinions the NDP continue to hide behind, and get to the bottom of just who knew what when. It’s vital to ensure this type of harassment scandal never happens again. To date, the NDP have refused. Clearly, there were people in very high places who knew a lot and protected Murdoch Carriere in the past, and continue to do so today. Or maybe there are some individuals in very high places that are protecting themselves.

Murdoch Carriere’s victims deserve answers. The people of this province deserve answers. Unfortunately, no answers are coming from this NDP government.

If you have a question about this report or any other matter, just Contact Lyle.

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