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Statement from crs

In 2021, Paul McKessar was stood down from CRS, while I commissioned an investigation into his behaviour and CRS in general. Ms Gillian Warren - an independent investigator - conducted the investigation, which included the participation of Lydia Cole and Possum Plows. Ms Warren followed up with a report in July 2021, which we published, with recommendations and proposed best practices that CRS has followed with absolute exactness.  

Ms Warren's report recommendations that are relevant here are that CRS should: 

● Require Mr McKessar to undergo treatment or enrol in an appropriate course to address the behaviours that place him at risk of entering intimate personal relationships with young artists, such as his willingness to engage in flirtatious behaviour, and getting intoxicated, either with them or in their presence.

● Not reinstate Mr McKessar as a director or artist manager until he can satisfy his business partner that he is no longer at risk of forming such relationships. At that point, CRS Music will need to make a business assessment about the feasibility of Mr McKessar being reinstated to his former roles. 

For the years that Paul has been away from CRS, he undertook regular and significant therapy. My hope was that he had the capacity - through this process - to evolve, change and learn. 

I am now quite satisfied that Paul's behaviours have been thoroughly addressed, and that he is not at risk of forming intimate personal relationships or behaving inappropriately with artists or work colleagues. I’m also satisfied that he has taken full accountability, learned and evolved.  

After his more than 2 years’ personal work and therapy, his consultation with significant industry stakeholders, and in line with Ms Warren’s recommendation, I made a business assessment in 2023 as to the feasibility of Paul’s return to work. My considered assessment was that in the appropriate circumstances, where everyone directly involved is comfortable, including artists, staff and stakeholders, he can return to work in some capacity. He has not been and will not be reinstated as a director of CRS.  

I believe that people can change and that redemption must always be possible. I also believe that other people and entities have their own agency. They can each decide with whom they will work and in what circumstances. 

CRS Management actively participated in the investigation into Mr McKessar and our company, we took all the steps asked of us in the report. Along with our partners in the music industry, we work to ensure a safe workplace in all situations, spaces and circumstances.  

Campbell Smith
27/6/24