Tuesday 20 November 2018

Sunday Times apology for Myers column is 'completely unacceptable', Women's Council

Frank Fitzgibbon, editor of the ‘Sunday Times Ireland’
Frank Fitzgibbon, editor of the ‘Sunday Times Ireland’
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

The National Women's Council of Ireland (NWCI) has launched a stinging attack on the Sunday Times over its apology for the controversial Kevin Myers article.

In a statement, released this evening, the council described the apology as "completely unacceptable" and said it "made no reference to the misogynistic and sexist views expressed in the article".

Earlier today the newspaper published an apology following the appearance of a column which has been branded anti-Semitic and misogynistic.

In the apology with the title 'Overstepping the mark' the paper said that the article "included unacceptable comments that caused offence to many, in particular to the Jewish community".

BBC presenters Vanessa Feltz (left) and Claudia Winkleman. Photo: PA
BBC presenters Vanessa Feltz (left) and Claudia Winkleman. Photo: PA

The four paragraph apology from the Sunday Times added that the article 'Sorry ladies, equal pay has to be earned' was removed and the two female BBC presenters named in the piece Vanessa and Claudia Winkleman were apologised to.

"Newspapers publish controversial articles that often cause upset. It is important to generate forthright debate about issues affecting our lives.

"It is also important, however, not to publish comments that overstep the mark. Where this column did so, we are deeply sorry."

However the NWCI has rejected the apology in a statement this evening.

Orla O’Connor, Director of the NWCI, said: “The article clearly displayed discriminatory views on both gender and religious grounds, yet the apology today made no reference to the misogynistic and sexist views expressed in the article.

“The apology presented the Sunday Times with the opportunity to redress the views expressed, and the offence caused to women. This opportunity was clearly not taken. By its omission, in our view the apology gives licence to further similar sexist views to be expressed in its newspaper in the future.

Ms O'Connoer concluded: “It is ironic that the genesis of this article came from a series of articles on the persistent inequalities that women experience with regard to economic equality and leadership. NWCI will now submit a formal complaint to the Sunday Times’ editor, and to the Press Ombudsman.”

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