The Malta Independent 20 June 2018, Wednesday

Equality Minister takes exception to TMID editorial

Saturday, 13 January 2018, 09:53 Last update: about 6 months ago

The Ministry for European Affairs and Equality has sent the following Right of Reply in reaction to Thursday’s editorial, entitled, ‘Why react to one case but not the other?’

“The editorial of the 11th of January demanded a logical explanation, regarding why Minister Dalli wrote to the Speaker regarding Mr Caruana Carabez’s article in The Times, and then went on to make an illogical comparison about apples and oranges. Here are the facts. In the case of Assistant Police Commissioner Mario Tonna, the said officer resigned immediately and Minister Farrugia unequivocally condemned any form of domestic and gender-based violence while retracting the statement interpreted as justifying the officer’s behaviour.

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In the case involving Members of Parliament Marlene Farrugia and Joe Debono Grech, both hurled insults at each other. As correctly noted, Minister Dalli had condemned the verbal abuse by both MPs. She however did not agree with MP Farrugia that this was a case of violence against women, simply because Mr Debono Grech is a man, while she is a woman. This was a case of verbal abuse against a woman and a man. In fact, the verbal attack had been going on for days with MP Farrugia calling Labour MPs all sorts of names. It would be a disservice to real victims of gender-based violence to equate this episode to a form of violence against women. Sadly, both gave as much as they got with MP Farrugia starting the tirade against Labour male and female MPs.

On the other hand, Mr Caruana Carabez’s article involved 1950s stereotyping that targeted all women, which stereotyping usually leads to the acceptance of discrimination.

Dr Dalli condemns all instances of sexism, inequality and all forms of violence, and her work in these areas of policy are evidence of her commitment.”

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