The organisers of Falls Music and Arts Festival have finally issued a statement after a number of women reported sexual assault at the Tasmanian event over New Year’s Eve, slamming the incidents and saying that “men [need] to have some respect and stop taking these liberties.”
A total of five women have now come forward with allegations of sexual assault, one including rape, at the Marion Bay festival.
“The safety and wellbeing of our Festivals patrons is of utmost importance to us,” festival organisers wrote on Facebook. “We cannot comment on this as it is now a police matter, we are deeply saddened and disturbed by these allegations. Everybody has the right to move through life – not just at a music festival, but everywhere – free to feel safe and confident to enjoy their surroundings. Like everyone else we are disgusted and angry that some people feel they can inappropriately touch others without their consent. We would like to see the conversation turn from telling our women and girls to be on guard and vigilant, to telling our boys and men to have some respect and stop taking these liberties.
“We work closely with the Police; Ambulance; Fire and other emergency service providers; security and other community services to provide the best and safest possible experience for our patrons. We are doing everything in our power to assist the Tasmanian Police and hope these perpetrators are caught. Our thoughts are with the alleged victims and their families at this time.”
Police said two of the incidents took place in the mosh pit (during sets Hot Dub Time Machine and Illy, while a third took place on the camping grounds. They have not released details of the following two reports.
Photo: Instagram / Falls Festival.
To access 24/7 confidential counselling for sexual assault and rape, please contact 1800 RESPECT on 1800 737 732.