NDP MP Christine Moore suspended from duties following veteran's allegations
Afghanistan vet says Quebec MP sent him explicit messages after he testified at a committee hearing
NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh has suspended caucus member Christine Moore from her duties while the party orders an investigation into allegations she behaved inappropriately toward an Afghanistan veteran five years ago.
Glen Kirkland told CBC the Quebec MP approached him after his testimony before a parliamentary committee in 2013 and invited him to her office, where she gave him alcohol, then followed him back to his hotel and later sent him explicit messages.
Kirkland alleges Moore, a nurse, offered him gin even after he told her he was taking antidepressants and painkillers, and was not supposed to be drinking.
He also claims the Abitibi—Témiscamingue member of Parliament continued to send explicit messages and in July 2013 messaged him that she'd arranged a trip to meet him where he was playing golf with friends in Saskatchewan.
It was during that visit, Kirkland said, that he told her "this is not happening." He alleges she still turned up at his Brandon, Man. residence a few weeks later and he had to be "curt" with her.
"Look, I'm not crying rape," Kirkland told CBC. "I don't like to think of myself as a survivor. I prefer 'thriver.' But what she did was inappropriate. Was I a willing participant? I guess it depends on your definition of willing. There was a power imbalance. There was a level of authority there."
In a statement to CBC on Monday, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh called the allegations "troubling."
"I take these allegations very seriously, and I will be appointing an independent investigator to conduct a fair and full examination," he said in a followup statement Tuesday.
Singh said that while the investigation is ongoing, Moore's duties as an NDP MP, including participation on committees, will be suspended temporarily.
He said Moore's role in caucus will be re-evaluated once the investigator's work is complete.
Moore tied to Weir case
In her own statement, Moore said she welcomes the opportunity to participate in the investigation process.
"Out of respect for the fairness and the integrity of the process, I will not be commenting further on these allegations at this point," she said.
Earlier this year, Moore sent a letter complaining about fellow NDP MP Erin Weir's behaviour, prompting an investigation that turned up sexual harassment complaints against him.
He has since been kicked out of caucus.
The party said Weir did not own up to his behaviour, while Weir blames his expulsion on the fact that he spoke out about the case publicly.
"New Democrats are committed to changing the culture of politics in Ottawa and across the country," Singh said after Weir's case went public.
"As leader of the NDP, my primary responsibility is to ensure that the behaviour at the root of these incidents is addressed, that it never happens again," Singh said last week.
"The NDP has begun a comprehensive review of our policies on harassment in concert with all aspects of our organization. This is important work and a top priority for me personally."