Guardian bosses below fireplace over sexual harassment claims towards high author

British journalist and critic Nick Cohen, pictured at the Edinburgh International Book Festival in 2007 (Corbis via Getty Images)
British journalist and critic Nick Cohen, pictured on the Edinburgh Worldwide E-book Competition in 2007 (Corbis by way of Getty Photos)

The writer of The Guardian has come below fireplace over claims it didn’t do sufficient to research complaints of sexual harassment towards a star columnist.

Guardian Media Group is going through questions over its response to severe complaints made towards Nick Cohen over a 17-year interval.

He left sister paper The Observer final November on “well being grounds”.

In response to the New York Occasions, former Guardian journalist Lucy Siegle stated she had made a grievance to senior administration in 2018 about Mr Cohen “groping her within the newsroom” in round 2001.

The New York Occasions stated Mr Cohen grabbed her backside and that 5 different girls described related encounters in pubs between 2008 and 2015. One other claimed Mr Cohen had repeatedly provided to ship her specific images in 2018, and raised the matter with HR the next 12 months.

Mr Cohen’s repute was “extensively identified” to the extent that some feminine colleagues used a special entrance to a pub close to the workplace “to keep away from being groped by him”, the New York Occasions alleged.

A spokesman for Guardian Information & Media stated: “We take all allegations of office harassment extraordinarily critically and purpose to assist victims in all circumstances. We’ve got processes which anybody can use to boost complaints in order that they are often absolutely investigated.

“Not one of the incidents the New York Occasions experiences have been raised with Guardian senior administration till one severe allegation was raised confidentially with a member of senior administration in 2018. Nevertheless, the sufferer requested to stay nameless and didn’t want to pursue the grievance.

“When additional particulars of this and one other grievance have been later made public on social media in 2021 and 2022, we instigated our personal HR investigations, though neither complainant wished to participate. Previous to the conclusion of the HR course of, Nick Cohen left the Observer in November 2022 on grounds of ill-health.”

Mr Cohen didn’t reply to requests for remark from the Night Normal.

He instructed the Each day Telegraph: “I took sick go away from The Observer in the summertime of 2022. I resigned on well being grounds later within the 12 months… I’m afraid to say that within the early 2000s I used to be an alcoholic. After three years of attempting, I went clear in 2016. Immediately, I look again with disgrace and remorse on the harm I induced.”

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