In the Media

Universities traumatise student sexual misconduct survivors by mishandling cases (The Guardian)

Universities traumatise student student sexual misconduct survivors by mishandling cases | Anna Bull and Tiffany Page
It’s time for universities to overhaul their sexual misconduct complaints processes to protect their students


Our new guidance, written in partnership with Georgina Calvert-Lee from discrimination law firm McAllister Olivarius, looks to address the fact that many student complainants feel let down by the process their university used to handle their complaint. This stems from the fact that student complaints procedures and staff disciplinary procedures are maintained as two separate processes.

While many universities say they have a “zero-tolerance” approach to sexual misconduct, in practice they do not. They lack the procedures to ensure that students are not disadvantaged, traumatised and victimised by making a complaint. Along with long-term prevention and cultural change programmes, universities need transparent, joined-up procedures for staff-student complaints, investigations and decision-making procedures.