1. Q&A panel “dumbfounded” after audience member shares personal story of university abuse.
A woman’s story of university hazing at a Melbourne university left Monday night’s Q&A panel “dumbfounded”.
Vegan student Melis Layik had asked a question about how higher education institutions deal with sexual assault and harassment accusations and host Tony Jones asked if she wanted to share her own story.
She told them of the time three male students broke into her university accommodation and threw meat at her.
“One man, with the assistance of two others, climbed through my second-storey room and threw raw meat at me,” Layik told the panel.
“I went to the college and each time they did nothing about it. They made me feel like I was making a big deal out of it and I was sooking, seeking attention.”
Jones asked her when it happened, and at what time of day. She said it was last year, at 3am.
She said the men knew she was vegan.
“They thought that was something they could personally attack. But really, the reason is kind of pointless. It doesn’t really mean anything.”
Government panellist Simon Birmingham said the incident was “appalling” and the three men should be tossed out of the university.
Musician John Butler, who was on the panel, was visibly shocked.
“Who cares why?” he asked. “That’s a criminal act. It’s a stupid thing to bloody do. It’s not what any human being should be doing.”
He said he was “dumbfounded” by the story and why nothing was done to support Layik
“As a father of a son and a father of a daughter, I am just kind of a little bit perplexed about this kind of culture that seems to be allowing this to happen. I hope my daughter never has to deal with it and I hope my bloody son never acts like that.”
A 2017 Australian Human Rights Commission report into sexual assault figures at Australian universities found 51 per cent of students were sexually harrassed at least once in 2016, with one in five sexually harassed in a university setting.
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— Nine.com.au (@Ninecomau) October 1, 2018