NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh is temporarily suspending Regina MP Erin Weir from his duties and launching an investigation after concerns were raised about potential harassment by a fellow caucus member in an email Wednesday.
In a press conference held on Parliament Hill on Thursday, Singh told reporters he had become aware of allegations made against Weir via an email sent to him by a member of the NDP caucus that complained about behaviour by Weir. The alleged conduct was not sexual in nature.
“Mr. Weir’s duties as NDP MP will be temporarily suspended,” he said. “Once the investigator’s work has been completed, the MP’s role in caucus will be re-evaluated.”
Singh offered few details about the allegations. He said the complaint did not come from the victim of the alleged actions, so it was difficult to be clear on exactly what might have happened.
“We’re not clear,” he said, when pressed about the nature of the behaviour. “Nothing right now that I’ve read suggests it is sexual in nature.”
Singh continued, saying that the concern was “serious enough” for him to feel he needed to take action.
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An official told Global News the party is in the process of working with union and management to bring in the third-party investigator and setting up the process for the review.
The email in question was sent to members of the caucus and was described as harassing behaviour that was serious enough to prompt a discussion among the caucus.
Weir has not been formally removed from the NDP caucus but he will not sit on any committees or speak on behalf of the NDP while the investigation is ongoing.
Singh said Weir’s role in the party will be re-evaluated following the investigation.
“As politicians, we are placed in a position of public trust. We are, and should be, held to the highest possible standards and it is absolutely right that our party has a process to investigate any allegations of harassment,” Weir said in a statement.
“However, I do not know what is being alleged. I am confident that I have not harassed anyone and welcome a prompt investigation to clear my name. I look forward to continuing to represent the people of Regina–Lewvan as a member of the NDP caucus.”
Weir was first elected in 2015.
His parliamentary website lists him as serving as vice chair of the Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates.
He is also listed as a member of the Subcommittee on Agenda and Procedure and the Standing Committee on government Operations and Estimates.