A Liberal MP claims she was a victim of sexual harassment while working at the ABC before entering politics.
Victorian Senator Sarah Henderson appeared on ABC’s Insiders Monday along with fellow Liberal MP Katie Allen to discuss Parliament House’s growing list of sexual misconduct scandals.
When host David Speers asked if, based on their previous experience, they weren’t surprised by the allegations coming out of Canberra, both women said they were shocked to have always had a ‘positive’ time in parliament.
Victorian Liberal Senator Sarah Henderson (pictured) has claimed she was exposed to sexual harassment while working as a journalist for the ABC between 1989 and 1998
However, Ms. Henderson revealed that she couldn’t say the same about her job as a reporter for Australia’s national broadcaster from 1989 to 1998.
‘That’s a risky question to ask me, because I had nine years [working] at the ABC, ”the former journalist told Speers.
“And I’ve had some pretty unpleasant moments, especially when I presented the 7:30 am report.”
The politician said she had addressed the incidents and that action had been taken against those responsible.
Despite her own personal experiences, Ms. Henderson said she was “absolutely shocked and disgusted” at the allegations that have emerged from the nation’s capital over the past six weeks.
The sickening claims have continued to increase since former Liberal staffer Brittney Higgins came forward last month, claiming she was raped in Parliament House by a senior colleague in 2019.
Federal Attorney General Christian Porter was also charged with raping a woman in 1988 when the couple were teenagers, but the prosecution made her own life last year and Mr Porter has vehemently denied the claims.
Several female Labor employees then took to a secret Facebook group to share stories of their own sexual assaults by male colleagues.
Ms. Henderson said she believes the issues of sexual misconduct in Parliament are not limited to her party
A series of alleged rapes by government ministers have been brought to light in recent weeks after former Liberal staffer Brittany Higgins came forward and claimed she had been sexually assaulted in 2019 by a colleague in Parliament House.
And last week, SkyNews’ Peta Credlin claimed that Liberal Party staffers participated in orgies at Parliament House.
A whistleblower later shared footage with Ten News of a male employee masturbating in the office of a female Liberal MP, leading to his resignation.
Ms. Henderson said she believed that there is no specific problem within the Liberal Party, but that the issues are “above politics”.
“I think we have seen allegations all over the political divide and it is very concerning,” she said.
“I can’t believe there are still people in the building involved in that incident,” Ms. Henderson said.
‘I say go away. We need the bad eggs from our parliament, from our party, and there must be zero tolerance for this kind of behavior. ‘
Ms Allen agreed, saying that sexual misconduct is taking place in Parliament and the country.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison this week condemned the “shameful acts” that had taken place in Parliament House
“I don’t think anyone has any doubts that this is happening all over Parliament,” she said.
“We know this is happening all over Australian society.”
Senior Coalition executives have reportedly swapped photos and videos of themselves performing the solo sex acts in a Facebook Messenger group.
The vile deeds were committed more than two years ago, but only came to light after one of the advisers caught up with the rest.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison this week condemned the “shameful acts” that had taken place in Parliament House and pledged to listen more to women’s concerns.
“I’m even more concerned about, and more importantly, I recognize that a lot of Australians, especially women, believe I didn’t hear them, and that really upsets me,” he said.
For confidential crisis support, contact Lifeline at 13 11 14
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