Investigation underway into claim sexual harassment within Prison Service was covered up

An investigation is underway following allegations that a serious case of sexual harassment within the Prison Service was covered up.

It has also been alleged that the individual at the centre of the case no longer works within the Prison Service but is currently employed in a State agency where he has contact with minors.

The allegations emerged as a result of a protected disclosure made to the Department of Justice, according to a report in the Irish Examiner.

According to the disclosure, a manager within the service performed sexual acts in front of a female employee without her consent in 2011 and 2012.

The incidents were reported to management but no investigation was conducted when the woman disclosed that she has previously been in a relationship with the man, according to the disclosure.

The woman took a legal action over the incidents and the failure to investigate. The case was reportedly settled for just under €100,000.

The Department of Justice has confirmed receipt of the disclosure, which is dated September 20.

A spokesman refused to answer any questions about the nature of the investigation, the proposed timeframe, or whether a person outside the department has been appointed to investigate.

The disclosure was copied to four other departments on the basis that some of the allegations would come under their remit.

The departments notified were the Taoiseach’s department, the Department for Children and Youth Affairs, the Department of Finance, and the Department of Business, Enterprise, and Innovation.

KEYWORDS: Prison Service


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