Bulletproof's Ashley Walters has spoken out regarding sexual harassment allegations against his co-star Noel Clarke.
A group of 20 actresses, producers and other entertainment professionals have alleged to The Guardian that Clarke engaged in a pattern of behaviour that included unwanted sexual touching and harassment, taking and sending unwanted sexual content and bullying on set.
Clarke has categorically denied the allegations.
In the wake of the allegations, ITV decided to pull the finale of Viewpoint which was set to air this evening (April 30).
In a statement posted to Twitter, Walters wrote: "My thoughts are with the women who have come forward and told their awful stories. I’m in shock and deeply saddened by what I have heard on a multitude of levels.
"I could never condone behaviour of this nature neither in nor out of the workplace, and whilst Noel has been a friend and colleague for several years, I cannot stand by and ignore these allegations.
"Sexual harassment, abuse and bullying have no place in our industry. Every woman has the right to a safe workplace and moving forward I pledge my dedication to this."
I May Destroy You creator Michaela Coel also responded to the allegations about Clarke on Twitter. She wrote: "I am here to support great support for the 20 brave women who have come forward; those who have shared their identities with us, but also those who have preferred to use an alias; the mental hurdles a black woman must overcome to do such a thing as reveal their identity within a narrative of rape abuse or bullying at the hands of someone within our own community can sometimes be too much.
"Speaking out about these incidents takes a lot of strength because some call them 'grey areas.' These are however far from grey. These behaviours are unprofessional, violent and can destroy a person’s perception of themselves, their place in the world and their career irreparably. I have shared to show solidarity, to express my belief in them and to stand with them in their indignation."
In a statement regarding the allegations, Clarke said: "In a 20-year career, I have put inclusivity and diversity at the forefront of my work and never had a complaint made against me. If anyone who has worked with me has ever felt uncomfortable or disrespected, I sincerely apologise.
"I vehemently deny any sexual misconduct or wrongdoing and intend to defend myself against these false allegations."
Rape Crisis England and Wales works towards the elimination of all forms of sexual violence and sexual misconduct. If you’ve been affected by the issues raised in this story, you can access more information on their website or by calling the National Rape Crisis Helpline on 0808 802 9999. Rape Crisis Scotland’s helpline number is 08088 01 03 02.
Readers in the US are encouraged to contact RAINN, or the National Sexual Assault Hotline on 800-656-4673.
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