This post deals with sexual assault and might be triggering for some readers.
Former Liberal staffer alleges rape at Parliament House.
A former Liberal Party staffer has alleged she was raped at Parliament House by a colleague.
Media advisor Brittany Higgins, who was 24 at the time, told news.com.au she was assaulted in the office of then Defence Industry Minister Linda Reynolds in March 2019, and felt forced to choose between reporting it to the police or keeping her job.
Higgins told the publication the colleague took her to Parliament House after a night of drinking. She had fallen asleep, and said she woke up to find the man raping her.
EXCLUSIVE: a Liberal staffer has alleged she was raped in the Defence ministers office and then forced to attend a formal employment meeting about the incident in room where it occurred https://t.co/vYIJEpWAGp pic.twitter.com/ZLoKftnB4J— Samantha Maiden (@samanthamaiden) February 14, 2021
Security found her in the office in a state of undress the following morning.
The man lost his job, over the security breach of being in an office with classified information after hours.
After disclosing the assault, Higgins was contacted by Senator Reynolds' chief of staff to set up a meeting, which was conducted in the room where Higgins said she was raped.
A spokesman for the Morrison Government conceded this was a mistake.
Despite reporting the incident to the Australian Federal Police, Higgins chose not to make a formal complaint. She said her desire to protect the Liberal Party on the eve of the 2019 election and to save her "dream job" drove this decision.
Exclusive: Defence minister @lindareynoldswa has accepted it was not appropriate to hold a meeting with alleged rape victim about the incident in the room woman was found by security guards. She has not offered an apology @newscomauHQ https://t.co/TJrCWDOWvU— Samantha Maiden (@samanthamaiden) February 14, 2021