Updated: Mar 24
UK Parliament, House of Commons
Volume 717: debated on Wednesday 29 June 2022
Motion proposed by MP Layla Moran (Oxford West and Abingdon) (LD) to ban the use of non-disclosure agreements in alleged cases of sexual violence, bullying and harassment in universities.
Extracts of speeches from MP Layla Moran:
At the outset of this debate I want to commend the brave young women who have spoken out about their experiences of sexual assault and harassment. This campaign started with survivors and it is a testament to their courage that it has reached this place today. I start this debate by sharing their words...
That is not just one story in one college that happened a long time ago, and not just one incident of bad management by a rogue member of staff. That is recent and these stories are rife. From speaking to the student group, It Happens Here, which supports survivors of sexual assault at the University of Oxford, I know that there are survivors in colleges across universities who have all too similar stories.
I would be shocked if the Office for Students said verbatim that it would take years, because it certainly will not. Of course, it is right and proper that a regulator would consult on such a change, but it certainly will not take years. It is a priority for me, the Secretary of State for Education and the Government at large. The registration condition would mean that higher education providers could be sanctioned for failing to take seriously their duties—including on NDAs—with a fine, suspension or even deregistration as a university. It will really have the teeth to effect change.