Community statement concerning retired professor Dr. Hankey

Community statement concerning retired professor Dr. Hankey

Trigger warning: the following communication discusses sexualized violence and a criminal charge of sexual assault.

Dear King’s community,

We have learned that retired professor Dr. Wayne Hankey has been charged with sexual assault in a King’s residence in 1988.

Dr. Hankey retired from King’s in 2015. Like other retired professors, he is an Inglis Professor. While we respect the process of the criminal justice system, we also acknowledge the courage of those who step forward to make a complaint to the police – and of everyone who steps forward with their experiences.

In response to today’s news, King’s will be conducting an independent review to determine the facts and an appropriate response. It will be conducted in a way that is respectful of the criminal justice system and allows it to run its course.

We will not be making further comments about this matter at this time, as this is now before the courts. However, it is important to state that the university recognizes sexualized violence as a serious issue in society and at King’s and we understand it harms members of our college community in many ways. Acknowledging the impact of sexualized violence, our need to address it, and its inconsistency with our values, King’s created and adopted a Sexualized Violence Awareness, Prevention and Response Policy in 2018 after a broadly consultative process over a period of more than two years. This is one step in our commitment to making King’s a safer, more supportive space, and welcoming for everyone.  King’s also hired a Sexualized Violence Prevention and Response Officer in 2019.

Revision of the policy is ongoing and strengthening changes were recently made as part of an annual review. They were approved by the Board of Governors in December.

We recognize the fortitude and courage involved in coming forward with matters involving sexualized violence. We encourage any member of our King’s community who has experienced sexualized violence or who has found this news difficult, to come forward to get the support you need, knowing that you will be treated with dignity and respect. King’s Sexualized Violence Prevention and Response Officer, Jordan Roberts, is at King’s and available to provide confidential services and support to community members who need it. We also have a comprehensive list of additional support services here.

The University of King’s College is committed to providing a safe and supportive environment for everyone; one that is free of discrimination, harassment and all forms of violence.


William Lahey
President and Vice-Chancellor

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