...By Judah Olanisebee for TDPel Media.
Brittany Higgins’ and Grace Tame’s Joint Speech Removed from YouTube amid Defamation Lawsuit, But Higgins Posts Full Transcript on Instagram
The speech, given by Brittany Higgins and Grace Tame on sexual assault, has been removed from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s (ABC) YouTube channel amid a defamation lawsuit.
Bruce Lehrmann, who was charged with sexual assault in August 2021 following Higgins’ allegations but had the case dropped in November, claims he was identifiable in the address, despite not being named.
Lehrmann sent a concerns notice to the ABC, but when the footage was not removed by the deadline, he launched the lawsuit.
The ABC has declined to comment.
The speech had been viewed over 127,000 times before Lehrmann’s claim was filed, but it is now inaccessible on the ABC’s YouTube channel.
Tame’s address can still be found on the broadcaster’s YouTube channel, but Higgins’ speech and their responses to journalists’ questions are not included.
On Friday, following the removal of the speech from YouTube, Higgins posted the full transcript of her speech on Instagram in “loving memory” of her National Press Club address about parliamentary workplace reform and the national plan to end violence against women.
In the speech, the two women called for cultural and institutional reform to protect women in the workplace and criticised former Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s government for failing to act on women’s safety.
Lehrmann is also suing Channel 10, Lisa Wilkinson, news.com.au, and journalist Samantha Maiden over their coverage of Higgins’ allegations.
Before the defamation trials can proceed, a judge must determine whether Lehrmann can sue beyond the normal 12-month time limit. A ruling on the matter will be made on April 28.