Ateneo students file sexual harassment case vs professor
MANILA, Philippines – The Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU) student council on Monday, October 15, filed a case with the university against a longtime male professor who has allegedly sexually harassed several students.
Sanggunian ng mga Paaralang Loyola ng Ateneo de Manila president Hyacenth Bendaña confirmed this in a message to Rappler.
The formal case, composed of complaints from several students, will be part of official investigations being conducted by the university. Formal hearings have yet to be scheduled.
The student council said it would not name the professor yet so as not to compromise ongoing investigations. (READ: Ateneo professor faces sexual harassment complaint)
Despite this, Bendaña said the student council will use its two seats on the University Committee on Decorum and Investigation and the University Discipline Committee “to ensure justice for students.” The two bodies are the school’s official investigating body and the body in charge of hearing and deliberating cases filed among members of the Ateneo Community, respectively. (READ: Ateneo starts probe of professor accused of sexual harassment)
The case comes almost two weeks after the student council last October 3 initially called on students victimized by the teacher to come forward with their testimonies should they be willing to file a case.
Protecting students: In a statement posted on Facebook and Twitter Monday night, Bendaña said the student council was committed to “protecting students and lobbying for their safety and human dignity.”
“May this be a reminder to members of the Ateneo community that the Sanggunian vehemently condemns human indecency and dehumanization in the Loyola Schools…. We continue to stand with you,” she said.
The student council also repeated its call for students to report cases of sexual harassment to the group.
They said that while posts on social media have indicated similar experiences, “the best way for the Sanggunian to compel the University to hold formal investigations and hold perpetrators accountable is for willing survivors to file official complaints against alleged sexual harassers.”
[MEMO] Case Filed by the Sanggunian Against LS Professor— ADMU Sanggunian (@ADMUSanggu) October 15, 2018
If you or anyone you know would want to file a formal complaint, please message @SangguCASMV .
We continue to stand with you. #OurSanggu pic.twitter.com/hpLYZoeuDx
Where it started: A post in the Facebook group "ADMU Freedom Wall" drew attention to the professor’s alleged sexual harassment that left students uncomfortable. He had allegedly invited them for individual consultations in his private bedroom, and messaged students inappropriately.
Several posts also suggest the alleged harrasment had been going on for years, as some of the students had already graduated.
Despite the attention around incidents involving a particular teacher, Bendaña said it was not the first time sexual harassment cases were filed against professors in the university. (READ: The many faces of sexual harassment in PH)
The attention on the case, she said, has caused sexual harassment cases filed against Loyola Schools professors in the past to resurface. – Rappler.com