To date we (at RESPECT) have received a number of serious reports of sexual harassment and assaults about a specific senior individual in a unit and there are already a number of women who have expressed fear for their own safety and for the safety of others.
Have you been affected?
We are asking for anyone affected by, or who has witnessed anything to please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. There will be no pressure for you to go to the police or to take part in any follow up and we will not pass on any of your details unless you have given express permission.
We ask that you not post specifics here or on the facebook post, not to silence people, but because there is a clear pattern to the abuse reported and we need accounts to be independent of each other – and for this same reason we will not name it or the individual.
How to contact us with details
However, if you do contact us and feel comfortable doing so, could you please name them. If you then include as much technical detail as possible. Dates, times, places, other people present. We are sorry to place this burden on you and we will do nothing with this information unless you expressly give us your permission which you can withdraw at anytime. You are the one in control.
We apologise if this stirs up horrible memories and please don’t feel it is your responsibility to come forward – do what is right for you now.
The following information was provided by an ex police officer :
The first thing they expressed was a personal horror and bewilderment at the existing lack of industry support for women within archaeology! They couldn’t believe that we are effectively being left to sort this out for ourselves and compared it to professionals working in the gig economy with the same complete lack of protection.
In terms of the collection of accounts he (the ex police officer) agreed that in the interim this would be helpful to collect individual accounts (contact us at email@example.com) but stressed that we need to keep them separate so they are independent of each other and establish patterns of behaviour without prejudice. He also pointed out that when we place this request for information on broader platforms like BAJR – as long as we DO NOT name any individual, unit or area that it would be considered independent accounts.
The issue is that the police cannot investigate until a complaint is made – but once even a single report is made, the police would then be able to contact us at RESPECT and with the written permission of an individual we could pass on their information – again we will stress that if you have given us an account we will do nothing with it without your explicit consent. In the event that a complaint is made and goes to the Police we well be back in touch with you before passing any information on to the police.
In terms of reporting sexual harassment or assault this can be done at any police station and the police have a legal obligation to investigate – he did advise that you emailed first to arrange an appointment as it creates a paper trail and request that there is someone there with the correct experience to talk to you – rather than the duty officer.
They will then liaise with the local force in the area where they are based and where harassment /assault took place.