Kenya: Anti-Sexual Harassment Campaign #CampusMeToo Launched in Nairobi

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(file photo).
19 November 2019

One in every two female students and one in every four male students has experienced a form of sexual harassment from a member of staff in Kenyan Universities.

This is according to a survey done by ActionAid in partnership with UN Women for the campaign under the hashtag #CampusMeToo that is set to be launched today at the University of Nairobi.

BREAKING THE SILENCE

Macrine Ondigo the project coordinator says the campaign aims at empowering students to break the silence on sexual harassment and advocate for the development and implementation of new, and improvement of existing, anti-sexual harassment policies in Kenyan universities and colleges.

The campaign also aims at ensuring a safe and conducive learning environment for students.

"Sexual harassment targeted at students in higher learning institutions in Kenya is a deeply ingrained issue. It continues to undermine human rights and unfairly deprives the youth of Kenya a safe environment in which they can thrive, innovate and contribute positively to their personal and educational development," said Ms Ondigo.

"The campaign is aimed at garnering support from Kenyan youth in higher learning institutions through a signature collection process in support of a petition to be presented to the Ministry of Education, insisting that they address the injustice of sexual harassment by attending to demands of students in campuses," she added.

SUPPORTING THE VICTIMS

Some of the demands include for the institutions to facilitate all newly-enrolled students to watch an educational resource on sexual harassment, and make sexual harassment a topic in every induction of students, conduct a yearly training for all staff on sexual harassment and signing a standardised code of conduct and ethics.

The campaign will also push for the appointment of a Gender Officer with the obligation of facilitating training and outreach on sexual harassment as well as providing resources and support to victims of sexual harassment.

The campaign further seeks to establish an investigative committee which the students can approach when they have received unfair or missing marks due to instances of sexual harassment from university lecturers or staff.

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