Pub sector women call on

“Condemn Andrew Griffiths MP’s sleazy, sexist and derogatory attitude towards women in pub sector”

Leading pub sector women call on BBPA’s Brigid Simmonds to join them in condemning Andrew Griffiths appalling attitude towards female pub workers and stamp out sexism and sexual harassment in the pub sector

A group of leading female pub sector licensees and campaigners have written to Chief Executive of the British Beer and Pub Association, Brigid Simmonds, the most high-profile woman in the beer and pub sector, asking her to join them in defending female bar and pub workers and in condemning the disgraceful treatment of two bar workers by Andrew Griffiths MP.

It has been revealed that Andrew Griffith, at the time a Business Minister in the Government, as well a former Chair of the Parliamentary Beer Group, sent a series of shocking sexual texts to two female bar staff over a three-week period. He has resigned as a Minister, but not as an MP and whilst he has apologised to his family and to those who voted for him, he has very notably not apologised to the two women in the pub sector who he sent the messages to.

A group of women in the pub sector, all licensees or former licensees and leading campaigners in the British Pub Confederation, Justice for Licensees, Licensees  Supporting Licensees and the Fair Pint Campaign, have condemned Mr Griffiths’ behaviour – but are demanding that Brigid Simmonds, as the most senior women in the beer and pub sector, does the same.

Mr Griffiths worked very closely with the BBPA whilst he was Chair of the Parliamentary Beer Group, who receive funding from BBPA members (large pubcos and brewers) and host private dinners with MPs and peers. As well as demanding an apology to the bar staff involved, the licensee campaigners are also saying that Mr Griffiths is not fit to work in the sector, with rumours circulating that he could be offered a highly paid job with a beer or pub company due to his connections if he is forced out as an MP.

Commenting Inez Ward, founder of Justice for Licensees and Vice-Chair of the British Pub Confederation said:

“Whilst I was horrified to read the article in the Mirror, very sadly I was not in the least surprised. For too long there are some men in this industry who continue to believe that degrading women and treating them as second-class citizens, or even worse objects, is acceptable behaviour. This is a blight on this industry and must be stamped out in no uncertain terms! We call upon Brigid Simmonds, as the highest profile woman in the beer and pub sector, to condemn Andrew Griffiths behaviour and stand up for women in our industry. We must stamp out this kind of attitude once and for all.” 

Commenting Olivia Tyler, licensee of The Globe Sports Lounge and Kitchen in Cowes and a Fair Pint Campaign member said:

“As a female licensee and campaigner for Fair Pint I was horrified and incensed to hear the news that Andrew Griffiths has been sending sexually explicit and violent messages to two female bartenders in his constituency. I have to spend far too much time protecting my amazing female staff from abuse, assault, and general sleaze and it is up to us women at the top of this trade to put an end to this societal plague of sex pests.

“As Chief Executive of the BBPA and one of the most influential women in this industry, I am sure Brigid Simmonds must be as horrified as I am at the behaviour of Andrew Griffiths and agree this has no place in our industry. So we need a strong statement from Brigid on this matter condemning Andrew Griffiths’ behaviour and in support of women working in the licensed trade”.

Commenting Carol Ross, licensee of The Roscoe Head in Liverpool, a Licensees Supporting Licensees campaigner and a Steering Group member of the British Pub Confederation said:

“It is disgraceful that Andrew Griffiths has failed to apologise to the two women working in the pub trade that he behaved so disgracefully towards. He must apologise to them and show he fully understands why his attitude towards these two female pub workers is so appalling. Brigid Simmonds must show some leadership now and condemn this attitude towards women in our sector. Andrew Griffiths must never be involved in the pub sector again, as women in it simply wouldn’t trust him or feel comfortable dealing with him”. 

Wednesday 18th July 2018

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