A Swedish music festival has responded to a ruling by the country’s discrimination ombudsman that found it guilty of violating discrimination laws.
Back in 2017, it was announced that the women-only Statement festival was set to take place in Sweden. Launched in response to an increasing number of assaults at festivals, Statement Festival’s message was clear; “At music festivals, everyone should feel safe.”
Kicking off back in August following a successful crowdfunding campaign that raised 533,120SEK ($82,603AUD), the festival was met with a number of complaints from people who claimed that catering to “women, non-binary and transgender only” was discriminatory.
Earlier this week, it was revealed that Sweden’s discrimination ombudsman (DO) agrees, finding the festival to be in breach of gender discrimination laws.
As The Guardian reports, Sweden’s DO found that even though the Statement festival didn’t enforce their “man-free” rule, the fact that they promoted the event in a way that “discouraged a certain group from attending the event” meant that they breached a gender discrimination law.
However, despite the fact that the Statement festival was found in breach of this law, they will not be penalised, namely due to the fact that no damages were suffered as a result of their breach.