Half of female students subjected to unwanted sexual touching poll finds

Helen Marshall, chief executive of Brook, said the survey highlights the importance of high quality relationships and sex education (RSE) in schools and universities.”We are failing our young people if they don’t know that the law protects them from the unwanted behaviours they are experiencing,” she said.”Furthermore, we are failing to equip and empower young people to navigate their sexual lives and relationships.”More than half of those who told the survey they had experienced unwanted sexual behaviour said it was from another student. Around a third of the incidents took place on campus.When it came to consent, only 52 per cent of the respondents understood it is not possible to give consent if you are drunk.Universities UK, the vice-Chancellors membership organisation, is due to publish recommendations this spring on how institutions can improve their efforts to tackle sexual harassment.”It is important to create an environment where students feel able to come forward with the confidence that an incident will be addressed,” a spokesman said. “The well-being of students is a top priority for universities, and they continue to work to make their institutions safer places to live, work and study so that no student or member of staff is subject to any form of sexual violence or misconduct.”   Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Cambridge University is considering lowering burden of proof for disciplinary cases Half of young women at university have been the victim of unwanted sexual touching, the largest poll of its kind has found.A survey of 5,649 British undergraduates found that only a quarter of those who were raped went on to report it. 16 per cent of female students said they have been pressured into a sexual act, compared to six year cent of their male peers.The poll, conducted by the sexual health charity Brook, asked students a series of questions about how much sexual harassment they have been exposed to.The majority of students said they had been subjected unwanted sexual advances, ranging from cat-calling to being forced into having sex. However, only eight per cent of students who were sexually harassed went on to report it.Last year it emerged that Cambridge University is considering lowering burden of proof for disciplinary cases, after claims that sexual predators are getting away with their crimes.  Students complained that the current system “actively discourages” survivors and victims of sexual assault from coming forward, while implying that perpetrators are unlikely to face consequences from the university.  Currently the university relies on the criminal standard of proof, beyond reasonable doubt, for all disciplinary cases other than ones relating to fitness to study. But students have called for decisions to be based instead on the civil standard of proof, the balance of probabilities.In response, the university’s discipline review committee proposed a change to the standard of proof required for misconduct claims.    Cambridge University is considering lowering burden of proof for disciplinary cases