Equal Education rocked by three resignations amid sexual harassment accusations

2018-05-18 21:46

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Equal Education's (EE) sexual harassment woes have multiplied after its treasurer Doron Isaacs joined two other members who have been accused of sexual harassment and have resigned as a result. 

EE announced on Friday evening that Isaacs submitted a letter to its national council in which he resigned as treasurer of EE and as a member of the organisation.

Despite resigning amid allegations of sexual harassment, the organisation said that Isaacs has not accepted any wrongdoing and indicated that he was prepared to submit himself to an independent investigation.

On Thursday, members of EE's management team wrote to the national council requesting it to suspend Isaacs and to investigate claims of misconduct against him.

READ: Equal Education's Doron Isaacs resigns amid sexual harassment accusation

The letter noted that allegations of sexual harassment were circulating about the former treasurer.

The Mail & Guardian reported that several women had spoken out about having been sexually harassed by Isaacs.

He joins former general secretary Tshepo Motsepe and former head of national organising Luyolo Mazwembe, who also resigned amid allegations of sexual harassment earlier this month.

"This has been an incredibly difficult period for Equal Education," the organisation's interim national coordinator Leanne Jansen-Thomas said in a statement.

Independent inquiry over allegations against general secretary

"We know that the trust and confidence which our supporters have placed in us and the reputation which we have built over 10 years of struggle has been damaged by what has transpired.

"However, we are committed to confronting these difficult times in our movement's history, with honesty and with integrity."

Jansen-Thomas said that EE had acted swiftly to address every allegation that had been put before it.

"We have not communicated publicly about these processes at each step of the way because it would undermine the integrity of these processes. In addition, we have acted in this way to protect those who have come forward as our primary concern."

Last week, the EE's national council established an independent inquiry into the allegations against the former general secretary and a broader assessment process to examine EE's handling of previous cases of sexual harassment and related misconduct.

An investigation into allegations regarding Isaacs would be considered as a matter of urgency by the national council, said Jansen-Thomas.

"We remain resolute in our commitment to investigate every allegation of sexual harassment brought against members, staff or leadership of EE. We are committed to taking the necessary steps to enable an independent, safe and respectful process that will allow women to come forward with allegations without fear and with requisite anonymity."

Read more on:    equal education  |  gender abuse

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