Labour to establish independent appeal process for alleged victims of senior staffer

The victims who claim to have been bullied and harassed by a Labour Party staffer will be able to appeal the findings of the original investigation.

Parties involved in the recent investigation into the allegations will have the option of appealing, a decision determined by the Labour Party National Council. 

Any appeal will be conducted by an experienced and independent expert, says Labour Party President Nigel Haworth.

"The complainants asked for an appeal process to be put in place, this decision acknowledges their concern," says Haworth.

Haworth says "reasonable" financial support will be given to any person participating in the appeal process so appropriate legal advice may be obtained.

"Personal and emotional support, independent of the party, will also be provided to any person participating in the appeal process," says Haworth.

The Council acknowledged a "number of young people" were involved in the allegations and subsequent investigation. 

Earlier this month, Newshub revealed the Labour Party was forced to review the internal investigation into sexual assault, sexual harassment and bullying by the senior staffer.

The review followed complaints of a botched investigative process, causing further trauma to the alleged victims. As a result, at least four people have resigned from official party roles.

Last week Deputy Leader of the National Party, Paula Bennett, slammed Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern for her role in the allegations levelled at the staffer.

"They talk of intimidating behaviour, and I suppose they have absolutely no faith in the process that will come from the Prime Minister's office and that they will be heard and be taken seriously," she told Newshub.

As the matters are now subject to appeal, Labour is unable to make any further comments at this time.

Newshub.

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