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National Women’s Council issues formal complaint over Hook’s comments

Published: Monday, September 11, 2017

The National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI) today issued formal complaints over comments made by Newstalk’s George Hook on sexual violence and ‘personal responsibility.’ NWCI also welcomed the decision by Dalata Hotels to end their commercial relationship with Newstalk.

Orla O’Connor, Director of NWCI said,
“NWCI today made a complaint to Newstalk and to the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI), on the basis that Mr Hook’s comments infringe on the following regulation of Section 48(1) of the Broadcasting Act 2009, “Harm & undue offence, including law and order as well as privacy” which says that “Every broadcaster must ensure that it does not broadcast anything which may reasonably be regarded as likely to cause harm or undue offence.””

Orla O’Connor continued,
“A woman is never to blame for rape and sexual assault, and to say otherwise is grossly irresponsible. NWCI welcomes the decision by Delata Hotels for ending their commercial relationship with Newstalk. This sends a strong message that these comments are utterly unacceptable. Violent men are socialised and enabled by women's inequality, and by comments like Hook's, which erase perpetrators from the discussion and focus culpability on the victim. While NWCI welcomes the swift apology from the broadcaster as an important and necessary statement, this is not the first time that Mr. Hook has made such comments. It is clear that disciplinary action is now required to ensure such comments are not repeated and to counter balance the impact of these comments on women.”

For more information, please contact Sarah Clarkin, Communications Officer, 085 8619087