TCDSU Presidential candidate Sean Ryan reported to Junior Dean for sexual harassment

The complaint regards a series of unsolicited Snapchats and messages

Sean Ryan, a candidate in the Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) sabbatical officer elections, has been reported to the Junior Dean, Professor Tim Trimble, for sexual harassment.

The complaint related to a series of sexually explicit messages and Snapchats sent to a woman over 2016 and 2017. The woman in question was distressed in the responses to the messages.

A different message regarded a party that the woman was hosting to which Ryan was not invited, where Ryan asked: “Are we black? Why aren’t me and [friend’s name] invited?”

Other messages seen by Trinity News show numerous sexual jokes made towards the woman’s sister.

In response to a request for comment by Trinity News, Sean Ryan said: “I have not sexually harassed anyone and am on my way to the Junior Dean’s office now to say that you have said this to me – the Junior Dean has not contacted me in relation to this so you couldn’t do a story like this.”

TCDSU Education Officer Alice MacPherson said: “The Students’ Union takes allegations like this very seriously. Schedule 3 of the Constitution makes clear that all candidates must uphold the College’s Dignity and Respect policy. If it is found that the Dignity and Respect policy has been breached by any candidate, the Electoral Commission will investigate and act accordingly. I have contacted the Junior Dean’s office and will work closely with them in so far as is appropriate in the resolution of this matter.”

A spokesperson for the Junior Dean did not respond to a request for comment.

Ryan was on the campaign team of last year’s Presidential candidate Bryan Mallon, who was criticised for sexist tweets during last year’s campaign.

Previously, Ryan received a major strike from the Electoral Commission for a member of his campaign team appearing to offer a €300 bar tab to Freshers in Trinity GAA.

If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article, you can contact these services:

TCD Counselling Service: 01 896 1407 1800 793 793
Welfare Officer: Office Hours: Monday, Wednesday 1pm (Global Room), Tuesday, Thursday 1pm (House 6)
DRCC: 1800 778 888
One in Four: 01 6624070

Note: This article was edited at 22:57 on 20/11/18 in response to a legal complaint by Sean Ryan.

Niamh Lynch

Niamh was Editor of the 65th volume of Trinity News. She is a History and Politics graduate.