Investigation into sexual harassment complaint against David O'Byrne finalised

Labor member David O'Byrne
Labor member David O'Byrne

The Labor Party will take no action against former Tasmanian leader David O'Byrne after an an investigation into a historical sexual harassment complaint.

The findings and recommendations resulting from the investigation are set to remain secret.

Labor secretary Stuart Benson on Tuesday said he had received a report from the independent investigation by former Fair Work commissioner Barbara Deegan.

He said he had accepted the key findings and recommendations she had made.

Mr Benson said these findings and recommendations had been sent to Mr O'Byrne and the complainant.

"I now consider this investigation to be finalised with no further action required," he said.


"An important part of the Labor Party's complaint handling process involves strict confidentiality clauses.

"These clauses exist to protect people who come forward and for the interests of due process, procedural fairness and natural justice for all parties.

"As someone involved in the complaints process, I as state secretary need to abide by these confidentiality clauses.

"On legal advice, respect to the complainant and respondent and to abide by the confidentiality provisions of the Policy, I am not able to make any further public statements about the matter."

A former junior employee at Liquor, Hospitality and Miscellaneous Union this year raised an internal complaint with the party against Mr O'Byrne when he was head of the union in 2007 and 2008.

She said he had sent her unwanted lewd and sexually suggestive text messages and kissed her twice without consent.

Mr O'Byrne later admitted to the behaviour, apologised, and said he believed the kisses and messages were consensual at the time.

This story Investigation into sex harassment complaint finished first appeared on The Examiner.