Oxford Uni chaplain who compared sex offenders to ‘puppies needing training’ given welfare role

He asked one student assault victim if they were ‘aware of the effect they had on men’, but has now secured a post at another college

A member of staff at The University of Oxford who left his role after he previously asked rape victims if they were “aware of the effect they had on men” and compared sex offenders to “puppies needing training” has been given a new welfare role at another college.

The Oxford University chaplain Rev Canon Bruce Kinsey previously held the role of head of wellbeing and welfare at Balliol College but has now been given the role of welfare advisor at St Edmund Hall.

He stepped down from his previous role in 2021 after a number of students voiced their concerns over his behaviour. One student said she reported a rape to Reverend Kinsey who asked her “if she was aware of the effect she had on men”, called her “very attractive” and said she should be “wary of the impact the allegations would have on her alleged attacker.”

“You don’t want to piss people off who you might meet again downstream,” he added, reports MailOnline.

Oxford chaplain

But now the Oxford chaplain has returned to the university at another college in a welfare role where we will provide support to students on a part-time basis. MailOnline reports that his role was initially set to last until his retirement in June but after being approached by them about the story, the college said he will now leave the role at the end of term.

In 2021, his former college Balliol was accused of creating a “culture of victim blaming, compounding the trauma of sexual abuse with an inadequate and harmful response” after a student reported how Bruce Kinsey handled her report of sexual assault.

A report later found that Rev Kinsey had made the victim feel as if she were to blame for her own sexual assault and had discouraged her from reporting the attack after branding the college reporting system a “kangaroo court”. It also found that he had engaged in “unwanted and unwarranted conduct” and had harassed the victim.

Balliol College was then asked to remove the Chaplain from all welfare proceedings relating to sexual harassment and assaults as well as considering whether his behaviour warranted grounds for dismissal.

In a meeting with Rev Kinsey at the time of the reports, one victim said her friends had “similar experiences” with the reverend, claiming they were also asked “intimate and inappropriate questions, told that their behaviour had encouraged sexual abuse, and had traumatic experiences of rape and assault belittled”.

She added that Kinsey also suggested “that survivors should consider how damaging such accusations could be to the male students’ reputation and future”.

Oxford chaplain

Rev Kinsey denied the claims at the time and said he takes “claims of sexual assault very seriously” reporting the incidents to the appropriate services. He said he would “never trivialise such a report of harm” and said he did not recognise the account.

One of the initial Balliol students who complained about Kinsey’s behaviour has spoken out about his reappointment. They said: “Bruce has had harassment complaints upheld by Balliol College and I am very disturbed to hear that Edmund Hall would hire him knowing of his previous record of being extremely risky with students’ well-being.

“Either Balliol has not told them of his previous record or they have not checked. And I find it crazy to think that Edmund Hall would not be aware of Bruce because there were three women, including myself, who came forward publicly about him. It is like they feel sorry for the guy but Oxford is a boys club and if you are a predator they all look out for each other.”

St Edmund Hall College told The Tab: “Bruce Kinsey assisted as Interim Chaplain for a short time at the start of this term until our new Chaplain took up her role in early February. He now holds a short-term advisory position during the transition period and, as planned, that position finishes in March at the end of term.

Oxford chaplain

Via YouTube

“We would also like to emphasise that the College takes all student reports of misconduct by others, including those involving sexual assault and/or harassment, extremely seriously. When a report of student misconduct is received, the report is dealt with through a rigorous non-academic disciplinary procedure, formulated on the basis of legal advice from a leading KC, and detailed in the College By-laws.

“In accordance with this process, when a major breach of discipline is alleged, the College arranges for an investigation by an external independent expert, followed by consideration of the evidence by a panel chaired by an independent legal practitioner. Students making reports have welfare support made available to them by one of two female Senior Welfare Officers.”

Rev Kinsey told MailOnline he disputes some of the claims and said after an investigation he “was largely exonerated by the college”.

The Tab has contacted Reverend Canon Bruce Kinsey and The University of Oxford for comment. 

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