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Gender and sexual violence: statement from Sciences Po

Sciences Po fully supports the victims of gender-based and sexual violence within the various IEPs and the liberation of their voice.

The institution also re-emphasizes commitment to the fight against all attacks on the integrity of people. Our mobilization is total.

A helpline and monitoring unit on gender and sexual violence was set up at Sciences Po in 2015, as part of a larger action plan on gender equality.

Regarding this helpline, Sciences Po has been recognized as a trailblazer on preventing and combatting gender-based and sexual violence. This was highlighted in the investigation conducted by the General Inspectorate of Education, Sport and Research in January-February 2021 following the Olivier Duhamel case. The conclusions of this investigation note that the establishment is "listed as an example of good practice" by the French Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation.

This independent helpline is available to students, employees, teachers and members of the scientific community faced with situations of sexual harassment, sexist behavior or even sexual violence. The helpline members offer benevolent and neutral support, without judgment and without any hierarchical relation to the people who contact it. They analyse the facts and direct victims and witnesses towards psychological support and / or legal proceedings, accompanying them as needed. They can also report the facts to the disciplinary bodies of our institution. The unit, very active since its creation, is made up of 5 to 7 members, including a coordinator and gender equality and anti-discrimination point referrer. All members of the unit are trained in issues of gender-based and sexual violence as well as in listening.

In addition, student life regulations have imposed measures to ensure the physical or moral integrity of participants at all events since 2016. The recognition of student associations is also conditional to their leaders following a training module dedicated to the fight against sexual and gender-based violence.

Faced with the testimonies collected by the helpline, the administration undertakes in-depth investigations and implements all necessary further actions.

In order to reinforce the existing action plan, a commission was constituted following discussions with the main institutional stakeholders and will include members of Sciences Po’s academic community, student body, and administrative staff as well as external experts.

Professor Danièle Hervieu-Léger, Honorary Director of Studies and former President of the School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences (EHESS), has accepted to preside this commission.

Under the presidency of Professor Hervieu-Léger, commission members will be charged with drawing up a detailed inventory of Sciences Po’s existing actions. They will formulate all necessary operational recommendations allowing us to reinforce, if not transform, our institutional measures relating to fighting both sexualized violence and abuses of power that may impact our community members. In order to accomplish this task, the commission will draw from best practices in France and internationally as well as from the student associations network.

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