TVA network apologizes for saying mosques sought exclusion of women at worksite

TVA network apologizes for baseless report

MONTREAL — French-language network TVA has apologized for a baseless report that said members of two Montreal mosques asked for female construction workers to be excluded from a nearby site.

The TV network’s management posted a short statement online Friday, one day after mentioning the debunked story on air.

The network said Friday the report was based on comments Tuesday by two entrepreneurs whose versions subsequently changed.

“TVA Nouvelles regrets this situation and wishes to apologize to the various stakeholders and viewers who have been affected by this news,” it wrote.

The brouhaha erupted when TVA initially reported the mosques had requested the no-women policy for the construction site during the busy Friday prayer sessions.

TVA also said women on the site were intimidated.

A day later, mosque officials dismissed the report and said they had only asked for parking to be available on Fridays.

The provincial government referred the matter to the Quebec Construction Commission, which studied documents, met with representatives of the mosques and the companies involved and spoke to women who worked on the site.

Commission president Diane Lemieux said Thursday there was absolutely no evidence that mosque members asked for female construction workers to be excluded from the nearby site.