The Presidents Club, a British Charity, on Wednesday said it would shut down and cease fundraising events after a media report revealed that attendees at a recent men-only charity dinner allegedly sexually harassed nearly 130 women who were employed as hostesses, Reuters reported.
In a report published in the Financial Times on January 24, an undercover reporter who attended the gala last week described the rampant sexual harassment at the event attended by 360 male guests, where women were subjected to groping, fondling, lewd comments, requests to join guests in hotel bedrooms, and were flashed at.
The items up for auction included a night at a strip club and plastic surgery treatment that would “add spice to your wife”, the report said. Also up for auction was lunch with Britain’s Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and tea with Bank of England’s Governor Mark Carney.
One of the staff told the Financial Times that the criteria for the job was to be “tall, thin and pretty”. They were paid £150, plus £25 for a taxi home. The hostesses were also asked to sign a five-page non-disclosure agreement, however, they allegedly were not given a chance to read its contents.
“The trustees have decided that the Presidents Club will not host any further fundraising event,” the Presidents Club said in a statement. “Remaining funds will be distributed in an efficient manner to children’s charities and it will then be closed.”
London’s Great Ormond Street and Evelina Hospitals have said they would return donations they received from the Presidents Club in the past, while advertising group WPPP said they were severing ties with the organisation.
“Women were bought as bait for men, for rich men, not a mile from where we stand, as if that is acceptable behaviour,” Labour Party MP Jess Phillips told Parliament during a debate. “It is totally unacceptable.”