More than half of Australian university students say they were sexually harassed on at least one occasion last year, and one in 14 were sexually assaulted at least once in 2015 or 2016, a survey of more than 30,000 students at 39 universities has found.
Australian postgraduates suffer from widespread sexual harassment and assault by staff they work with, according to the Council of Australian Postgraduate Associations. National council President Peter Derbyshire says anyone who has spent time with postgraduate students knows it is “the worst kept secret in academia that such behaviour occurs”.
Australian universities have a serious problem with sexual assault and sexual harassment, as revealed by the Australian Human Rights Commission. Rather than adopting tokenistic measures aimed at reassuring parents and international students, universities must step up and implement comprehensive, long-term and multi-pronged prevention strategies.