Details announced of review process over Michael Colgan allegations

It follows reports of inappropriate behaviour and abuse of power

Details announced of review process over Michael Colgan allegations

Michael Colgan is seen in Donnybrook, Dublin in 2013 | Image: Eamonn Farrell/RollingNews.ie

Dublin's Gate Theatre has announced details of an independent review into allegations against its former director, Michael Colgan.

The theatre says it takes the reports that have emerged over the past weeks "extremely seriously".

They relate to allegations and reports of inappropriate behaviour and abuse of power by Mr Colgan.

Rights Commissioner Gaye Cunningham has been appointed as an independent expert to oversee the review.

The board of the theatre say Ms Cunningham will conduct "an independent review of the matter".

Last week, the theatre asked any staff or contractors affected by events to contact them.

Gaye Cunningham | Image: ESB

In a statement, the theatre board says: "It is essential to the Gate's culture, and its future, that anyone who works for it, or has any dealings with it, is treated with respect and is not subjected to harassment, bullying or discrimination of any type.

"We have listened to the views of the people who have come forward in recent days, as well as various other stakeholders, and taken on board the concerns and feedback expressed."

Ms Cunningham will begin her work immediately and will report back to the board of the Gate Theatre in January 2018.

A copy of her final report will be provided simultaneously to the Arts Council.

Ms Cunningham will contact any current or former staff members who have spoken out on the record.

Other people wishing to come forward with concerns can contact Ms Cunningham directly via cunninghamconfidential@outlook.ie.

The threatre says any e-mails already sent to confidential@gate-theatre.ie will be accessed by Ms Cunningham only, and that account will be subsequently closed.

Ms Cunningham is an adjudication officer with the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC), and spent 34 years at ESB where she held various senior HR positions and was Secretary of the ESB Group of Unions.

Earlier, the Culture Minister Heather Humphreys announced a series of measures to tackle sexual harassment and abuse of power in the arts sector.