Hedley Responds To Sexual Misconduct Claims As Band Is Dropped From Junos
Organizers of the Juno Awards have pulled Hedley from the live broadcast in light of allegations of sexual misconduct by members of the band.
"After careful consideration of the situation and in discussions with the band, CARAS and Hedley have decided that the band will not be performing at the 2018 JUNO Awards," read a statement shared on Twitter.
Hedley has four Juno nominations this year, including Group of the Year and Fan Choice.
On Facebook, Hedley responded to accusations that appeared on social media with the hashtag "#outHedley2k18," including claims of groping of underage female fans.
While commending those who have come forward in the #MeToo movement, Hedley insisted “there are at least two sides to every story.” They dismissed the recent allegations as “unsubstantiated” and “not validated.”
The statement reads: “We would hope that people will bear-in-mind the context in which these unsupported accusations have been made before passing judgment on us as individuals or as a band.
“We realize the life of a touring band is an unconventional one. While we are all now either married or have entered into committed, long-term relationships, there was a time, in the past, when we engaged in a lifestyle that incorporated certain rock and roll clichés. However, there was always a line that we would never cross.”
Hedley is now facing repercussions.
Bell Media (parent company of this website) told eTalk: "In response to feedback from our listeners, we've adjusted our playlists accordingly and continue to closely monitor the situation."
In Edmonton, radio station Hot 107 tweeted that it "cannot in good conscience" support Hedley "until these allegations are deemed true or false" and is "ceasing all music from the playlist until further notice." Kiss Radio in B.C. shared: "We're aware of the accusations and have dropped Hedley songs at this point. We'll keep it that way until more information is released."
Also stepping back from Hedley is WE Day, a cause the band has supported. eTalk quoted a statement from the organization: "We take these allegations seriously, and have no plans to work with Hedley in the future."
The group has defenders, though. "Obviously if the allegations are true that's horrible," tweeted one person, "but as far as I'm concerned they're innocent until proven guilty."
Hedley, which is currently on a cross-Canada tour, said it will be evaluating “some of our next steps.” According to the statement, “our performances and personal appearances should continue to be inclusive and safe experiences that bring nothing but joy and happiness to our fans.”
The band is scheduled to perform Wednesday night in Medicine Hat. The Cageless Tour is set to wrap up March 23.