APA board issues open letter on sexual harassment
Tuesday, June 16, 2015
Posted by: Erin Shepherd
Today, the board of officers of the American Philosophical Association issued an open letter on sexual harassment. The letter is directed to two audiences: first, victims of sexual harassment, and second, members of the philosophy profession more broadly.
Read the open letter.
The letter reads, in part,
We are committed, both personally and as the primary governing body of the association, to combatting the widespread and well-documented problem of sexual harassment in our profession and to supporting our colleagues who have been victimized by sexual harassment. We hope that all members of the profession will stand with us in condemning sexual harassment in all its forms, and in supporting victims of sexual harassment so that they may continue their professional lives as valued members of our discipline.
Given the attention to sexual harassment in the philosophy profession the last few years, the board felt compelled to address the issue, and particularly victims of sexual harassment, in a meaningful way. Too often, victims of sexual harassment do not receive appropriate support. It is the board’s hope that this letter will offer some support to victims, and encourage all in our profession to be supportive of victims they encounter and take proactive steps to prevent sexual harassment.
Cheshire Calhoun, chair of the APA’s board of officers, states, “That sexual harassment poses significant difficulties for some members’ continued participation in the profession is a matter of grave concern. The open letter is the result of the board’s grappling with the question of how professional societies like the APA can best address those difficulties given that investigating sexual harassment allegations and imposing sanctions is best done by academic institutions.”
The board encourages all APA members, and all members of the philosophy profession, to read the open letter and take proactive steps to support victims of sexual harassment and improve the climate for women in the field.
All the best,
Amy E. Ferrer
An Inside Higher Ed article includes further information about the open letter on sexual harassment and the board's reasons for issuing it. Read the Inside Higher Ed article.