No ganging up on John... he’s not sexist
AN Independent Alliance Minister has declared that John Halligan ‘is not a sexist’, and told ‘hypocrites’ to stop ganging up on him.
It was revealed last week that Minister for State Halligan had asked a woman at a job interview about her marital and family status.
A WRC hearing found Mr Halligan’s comments were discriminatory and awarded the woman €7,500 in compensation.
However, his Independent Alliance colleague Finian McGrath said last night that Mr Halligan has been harshly treated.
‘John Halligan is not a sexist. There are a lot of hypocrites inside and outside the Dáil criticising John, they’re ganging up on him,’ he said.
At the Fine Gael conference yesterday, Leo Varadkar said that what Mr Halligan did was not a ‘hanging offence’.
‘First of all I think what he did was absolutely wrong... It has gone to the Workplace Relations Commission which has made a finding. He has accepted that finding, he’s going to pay that bill himself, he’s apologised, he accepted that he was wrong.
‘I think that does bring finality to the matter. I don’t think that is a hanging offence.’
Meanwhile, the MoS contacted several people who work as assistants to politicians. Many dismissed Mr Halligan’s explanation for his actions.
One source said: ‘We don’t believe it was a family-friendly question. If it was he would have followed up by mentioning his family friendly working arrangements.’
ON TOUR: Minister John Halligan in Thailand this week with Honorary Consul Hélène Fallon-Wood and Ambassador Brendan Rogers