Home News Dartmouth Student Goes on 22 day hunger strike over university’s handling of her sexual misconduct claim

Dartmouth Student Goes on 22 day hunger strike over university’s handling of her sexual misconduct claim

by Paul Goldberg

Maha Hasan, a Dartmouth grad student has gone on a 22 day hunger strike in protest of the university’s handling of her sexual misconduct claim.

A Twitter account “Justice for Maha Hasan” tracks how many meals she has missed.

Per DailyBeast, on July 14, Maha Hasan Alshawi, a graduate student at Dartmouth College, stopped eating.

The computer science student said she began a hunger strike after months of frustration over the way the Ivy League school handled allegations that her supervisor, Alberto Quattrini Li, sexually harassed her on two occasions and entered her private office without permission. She alleged in a letter to the university that the department’s chair retaliated against her when she spoke out, failing her on an exam and giving her a “low pass” as a teaching assistant.

“As I said before when I complained to the Guarini School about this, they told me that there aren’t enough proofs about the harassment and there should be consistency in the harassment (They told me, there should be more harassment reports from me and from different people against the same person to take action against him), and they closed the case,” the first-year PhD student wrote on June 9.

In case anyone didn’t get a chance to see my original post. Here you go:Hi Everyone, First of all, I’d like to thank…

Posted by Maha Hasan on Tuesday, June 9, 2020

In a June 12 letter to the Graduate Student Council, computer science faculty, and members of the administration, Alshawi stated she went to the school’s Title IX office with her allegations. But instead of helping her, Alshawi said the Title IX office “refused” to take action since “no other complaints had been filed against [Quattrini Li].”

A month later, Alshawi stopped eating, urging Dartmouth to open up an external investigation into how her allegations were handled.

“I started this hunger strike to stop this injustice and because I want to be treated equally,” she wrote in a Facebook post announcing her decision, noting that she went to the emergency room prior to her strike and reported she was “a 100% healthy person mentally and physically.” “This hunger strike will cause a permanent disorder to my health especially to my internal organs and my brain cells, and I will have to live with these disorders through my whole life if I didn’t die. The responsibility of these permanent disorders and probably my death lie on the Title IX office coordinators and Dartmouth administration because they can stop this injustice but they decided not to.”

Over the last 22 days, Alshawi’s hunger strike has prompted a social media campaign, and her supporters have taken to the campus’ mostly empty streets in protest. This week, the graduate student upped the stakes, announcing to her supporters she is no longer drinking water, stating: “I don’t know how long people can live without drinking water after hunger striking for 3 weeks, but we will all find this out soon.”

I just want to update everyone that I sent 6 emails to the school today and they didn’t reply with a confirmation that…

Posted by Maha Hasan on Wednesday, August 5, 2020

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