Ateneo admin urged anew to address sexual misconduct

Published February 16, 2021, 11:06 AM

by Gabriela Baron

The Ateneo community has urged the university administration to create a survivor-centered and trauma-informed community response  to address  sexual misconducts supposedly committed in its campus. 


In a joint statement released by Time’s Up Ateneo and the Sanggunian Commission on Anti-Sexual Misconduct and Violence, the Ateneo administration was asked to “duly honor survivors, their healing, and their vision of justice.”

“We call for a survivor-centered and trauma-informed approach in reforming our systems to address SGBV (sexual and gender-based violence). We call on the university administration to be true to the principle of the Code that commits to do no harm and to refrain from the revictimization and retraumatization of survivors,” the statement read.

The groups also sought an apology from the administration for the “misleading” memorandum it released on Oct. 23, 2019, which “discredited the stories and voices of survivors and their advocates.”

In a memorandum signed by Ateneo President Fr. Jose Ramon Villarin said there was no formal complaint filed against two professors tagged in sexual harassment allegations on campus.

It added that since the committee’s establishment in 2017, they have only received seven sexual harassment complains, of which five “resulted in termination of employment.”

The groups also called on the university administration  to “formally release survivors from any Non-Disclosure Agreement and to “refrain from weaponizing the Data Privacy Act” against survivors and their supporters.

The Sanggunian and Time’s Up Ateneo likewise urged the whole Ateneo community to continue necessary conversations and steps in seeking accountability and confronting the reality of SGBV inside the campus.

“The Sanggunian: Commission on Anti-Sexual Misconduct and Violence and Time’s Up Ateneo reaffirm our solidarity with survivors in their journey toward justice and healing,” the groups said.

Time’s Up Ateneo is a psychosocial support system and advocate group advocating for a survivor-centered and trauma-informed approaches to sexual violence.

The group was formed in 2019 after students and faculty of the Ateneo de Manila University staged a series of protests in October to decry the growing number of sexual harassment and misconduct cases in its campus.