22
July
2022
|
11:00 AM
America/New_York

Additional settlements reached in cases involving Strauss

University has settled with 296 survivors for more than $60 million

The Ohio State University has reached an additional seven settlements with survivors in cases involving Richard Strauss. The university has now reached settlement agreements with 296 survivors, more than half of the plaintiffs, for more than $60 million.

The most recent settlements total approximately $247,000 – and follow those announced earlier in April 2022, October 2020, May 2020 and March 2020. No taxpayer, tuition or restricted donor funds are utilized for these settlements.

Strauss was a university-employed physician from 1978 to 1998. He died in 2005.

Survivors covered under the agreements announced today had filed lawsuits related to sexual abuse committed by Strauss too late to be eligible for mediations in federal court and the individual settlement program established by the university in May 2021. Previous settlements with additional survivors include two through the court-administered mediation process and one through the university’s public settlement program. All male students who filed lawsuits have been offered the opportunity to settle.

“We continue to work toward restorative justice for survivors,” said Ohio State President Kristina M. Johnson. “This doctor’s conduct was abhorrent, and we are grateful for the survivors’ strength and courage.”

All participating plaintiffs will dismiss their claims against the university. As with previous settlements, the agreement announced today does not prohibit individuals from talking about Strauss’ abuse publicly.

An independent investigation by Perkins Coie LLP determined that Strauss abused students for more than 20 years, and that Ohio State administration failed to appropriately respond at the time. The university announced the independent investigation by Perkins Coie after a survivor came forward in April 2018. Following the year-long investigation, Ohio State released a 180-page report in May 2019 that detailed acts of sexual abuse against at least 177 former students. The report can be found on the Strauss investigation website along with related public records and university communications from 2018 through today.

Since February 2019, the university has also covered the cost of professionally certified counseling services and treatment for anyone affected by Strauss, whether counseling and treatment occurred in the past or is needed at any point in the future. To connect with these services, or if individuals are at all uncertain about how to proceed and have questions, please contact Praesidium at 888-961-9273 or visit https://website.praesidiuminc.com/wp/osu/.

Ohio State continues to commit resources to prevent and address sexual misconduct, including policies, programs, staffing and tools. Anyone who has experienced sexual misconduct while at Ohio State — and the incident involved another student or university employee — is encouraged to report to the Office of Institutional Equity, the university’s anonymous reporting service or law enforcement.

Those who have experienced sexual misconduct outside of Ohio State should contact local law enforcement. Additional resources include:

  • If you reside in the Columbus, Ohio, area, advocates from SARNCO can assist you in reporting, explain the investigation process and support you. SARNCO’s confidential, 24/7 support hotline is 614-267-7020.
  • If you do not reside in the Columbus area, you can contact the RAINN National Sexual Assault Hotline, a confidential, 24/7 resource, at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). You can also visit the website to chat live with a representative. Advocates will help you find a resource in your community.

Current Ohio State students seeking additional support services can contact the Office of Student Life’s Counseling and Consultation Service while faculty and staff can access support resources through the Employee Assistance Program.

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