In the wake of allegations of sexual misconduct against Win Butler, frontman of Montreal band Arcade Fire, Quebec Liberal Party (PLQ) Leader Dominique Anglade is urging victims to file formal complaints.
Asked to comment on the allegations against the singer and musician, Anglade said she was "extremely disturbed" by the testimonies reported in an investigation by American magazine Pitchfork.
She described the revelations as "serious allegations" and urged those involved to press charges.
"In any situation like this, I’ve always said, ‘Victims need to be able to speak out, to denounce and file a complaint,’ so this doesn’t change my perspective," the Liberal leader said Wednesday morning.
When pressed on the issue, she repeated that "allegations must be verbalized" and "complaints must be filed."
Anglade is a childhood friend of musician Régine Chassagne, a founding member of Arcade Fire and wife of Win Butler.
Together, Anglade and Chassagne created the Kanpe Foundation, which assists rural populations in Haiti.
Most recently, Chassagne wrote the foreword to Anglade’s biography, "What I Live By," published last year.
An investigation by U.S. magazine Pitchfork published over the weekend revealed the testimonies of four alleged victims who claimed they were sexually harassed and subjected to unwanted contact by singer Win Butler.
The victims, identified as three women and one non-binary person, described relationships in which the artist used his position of authority over them as female fans just entering adulthood while he was an international star in his mid-30s.
They also reported repeated and insistent messages, inappropriate photos and unwanted sexual advances.
In his response to the allegations, Butler attempted to explain his behaviour using a variety of excuses, including alcohol use and depression.
He also pleaded that the sex with the alleged victims was consensual and suggested that he and his wife had, in the past, practiced an "unconventional" form of marriage.
Following the allegations, the CBC music channel announced it would no longer air Arcade Fire songs on its programs.
All the same, the band launched its world tour on Tuesday with a show in Dublin.
A second concert is also scheduled for Wednesday night at the same venue.
The Canadian leg of the tour is scheduled for late November and early December.
— This report by The Canadian Press was first published in French on Aug. 31, 2022.
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