CA denies appeal of University of the Cordilleras prof fired for sexual harassment
The Court of Appeals (CA) has dismissed the appeal of University of the Cordilleras (UC) professor Cipriano Tucay, Jr., who was fired for committing sexual harassment in his lectures.
In a recent 8-page decision, the CA 5th Division upheld the National Labor Relations Commission’s May 30, 2016 decision affirming the validity of Tucay’s January 26, 2015 dismissal.
The students of Tucay’s Natural Sciences 2 class complained in December 2014 that he discussed disturbing topics like chopping and boiling the penis, tasting and smelling the vagina, and his favorite position when having sex with a man.
Tucay’s students also accused him of touching his student, calling a Korean student his boyfriend, pointing his middle finger at another student, and asking inappropriating questions such as whether the students have smelled their sperm and vagina.
The CA stressed that Tucay “miserably failed” to “adhere to the exacting standards of morality and decency.”
It noted the professor never denied the accusations against him and merely sought the particular details of the accusations and the names of the students he was accused of touching.
Tucay did not deny calling one student his boyfriend either, as he merely reasoned out that the word just referred to a “male friend.”
“The Court cannot simply ignore the complaint of UC’s 17 students. Under the circumstances, it is not enough for petitioner to deny or simply cast doubt on the allegations of the complainants,” read the decision penned by Associate Justice Ma. Luisa Quijano-Padilla.
While the court said Tucay has academic freedom to employ means necessary to his teaching, it found his actions “plainly uncalled for, if not unnecessary.”
The court also found no improper motive on the part of the UC or the students to make false accusations.