The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has heard from two witnesses who claim they were subjected to a “witch hunt” by some people within the beauty industry.
Key points:Victims of child abuse by paedophiles have claimed the brand was “blightned” by a Royal Commission in 2016It’s claimed one woman was fired from a beauty shop because she complained of being sexually harassed by a managerThe cosmetics company’s owners are currently being investigatedVictims claim the cosmetics company was “bought” from its owner, who was a convicted sex offenderVictims were initially told the allegations were “false”, but later changed their mindsThe women told the commission they were initially given a choice between returning to work, working as a beauty assistant or going to court.
But the two women who spoke to the inquiry said the company’s “blame and stigma” were put on them, with the company “denying they had anything to do with the allegations”.
“When we did leave and the investigation began, we were told there was no proof, nothing, nothing,” one of the women said.
The woman’s story follows the release of a series of damning findings into how some cosmetic firms were used to help abusers.
“In one case, we found the former manager had been arrested, then the cosmetics manager was interviewed and told to make sure the allegations against her were false,” one woman said.
“She was told to stop working in the business, she was told she was being paid less and she was not allowed to be in the company.”
The report, published on Thursday, has found that a woman who was fired by her beauty shop after complaining about harassment by her former boss, was told by a company manager she could leave if she “wasn’t a good model”.
In another case, a woman claims she was allegedly sexually assaulted by a staff member at the company, only to be told she couldn’t go to the police, because she was a “good model”.
“It was a complete lack of understanding that what the employee had done was a crime,” the woman told the inquiry.
“They didn’t know what the law was.”
The woman said she was subsequently fired from the company and was then asked to move to another one of her beauty shops.
“I went to work and was asked if I wanted to move again,” she said.
In a third case, another woman claimed a colleague of hers was fired because she claimed he sexually harassed her in a bathroom.
“My boss told me to go to another place, but I was told there wasn’t any other choice,” the former employee said.
She said she later made a complaint to a manager and was told the woman was terminated.
The commission heard from three people who were also abused at beauty shops: one of them was also a former employee of the company.
“The woman [the former employee] said she felt intimidated because she did not want to be seen as a victim,” the report said.
Her allegations are backed up by another witness, who told the report she was raped by a colleague while working at a beauty store.
“He was in his mid-20s and had been working in beauty for six years,” the witness said.
“I don’t know if I ever had an allegation made against him.”
The commission also heard from another woman who alleged that her mother-in-law had sexually assaulted her.
“There was a man in his early 20s who was the head of the beauty department and the owner of the shop,” the commission heard.
“His mother- in-law was the owner, but she had been the victim of sexual abuse by the manager.”
The hearing is due to conclude on November 11.
Topics:sexual-offences,business-economics-and-finance,community-and_society,women,business,community,sexual-health,psychology-and%E2%80%99-dysregulation,victoria-3550,qldFirst posted April 11, 2021 14:15:57Contact Nicola Legg