Alison Levitt QC Conducts Independent Inquiry into Sexual Harassment at Oxford University’s St Hugh’s College
The independent investigation was commissioned by St Hugh’s College after two former students accused their tutor, the late Prof David Robertson, of sexual harassment and unprofessional conduct. Prof Robertson, who died in August 2017, taught Politics at the college.
The investigation found that the college failed to take appropriate action over the Professor’s misconduct which took place between 1982 and 1991.
The College accepted the conclusions and recommendations of Ms Levitt QC’s Report in full.
The first former student who came forward described Prof Robertson as “doing a Weinstein on me”, referencing Hollywood Mogul, Harvey Weinstein. The allegations suggested a course of conduct by him towards female students about which it was alleged the College must or should have been aware and in respect of which the College failed to take appropriate action. A lack of any appropriate or practical route to allow students at that time to disclose harassment or to seek support in respect of the same was also alleged.
The College conveyed their sincere appreciation to the former student who made the disclosure for the courage she has shown in disclosing the behaviour she had to endure. It assured her that the College believes her and accepts her account. As a result of her actions it has become clear that other female students also had similar experiences.
A spokesman for St Hugh’s College said: “We wish to express our profound sorrow to those students who were affected by his conduct and our regret that such conduct ever occurred and continued during their time here. The approach of the College is now radically different. We take these issues very seriously and continue to try to promote further change across the University. We are, however, not remotely complacent and are continuing to ensure that our current students play a very active role with us in this effort.
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