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Old 11-19-2008, 09:23 AM   #62
john.burn's Avatar
Dojo: Chishin Dojo
Location: Coventry
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 200
United Kingdom
Re: Another harassment question

There's another side to situations such as this. I was involved in a situation (mentioned in another thread in this forum) regarding something which caused me to be ex-communicated from my old club, leaving me with no choice but to start out on my own.

To cut a long story short, an instructor was arrested at my old club for harassment / stalking of another student and they (the club) wanted to brush it under the carpet and refused to speak to me about it (I was perhaps one of about 4 people that were aware of the situation). They were happy for this instructor to still teach adults and children -- and let me make this point clear -- he admitted the charges -- this is not a case of innocent until proven guilty and the case was serious enough for a custodial sentence to be a very real possibility. I had witnessed the stalking first-hand but did not actually realise it was as serious as it was until the Police became involved and entered his house. I was called off the mat one night and told to go and speak to the head of the dojo... I walked out of the dojo that night. There was some attempt at resolution but to be honest, I was told I in no uncertain terms that I would have to apologise for my actions -- the only action I undertook, apart from walking out of the club that night, was to inform the governing body of the situation for which I received personal thanks for approaching them and doing the right thing (they put it to the club that this person should not be allowed to remain teaching or training). I was later allowed back to train without apologising however when I had a meeting with the dojo head and all appeared to be okay for us both to move forward I also mentioned I felt I had to start my own club but still wanted to remain a member or visitor of her club to maintain links with my friends. This was all okay until I got wind of a meeting called in hushed terms about me! I returned home on the day of the meeting to find a hand delivered letter stating I was not welcome to train there any longer and to not darken their door again. In the meeting people were told that should they wish to come and train with me they would have to leave. Thankfully some of the people did leave and did come along to help me out. We refer to them all as ‘the others' now and laugh about it but I came very close to turning away from aikido forever over this.

So, that's the short version! I guess I'm trying to say that doing the right thing can have serious repercussions on all concerned and to this day, no one from my old club is allowed to train with me.

Would I do the same if I had to go through this again or could take time back? Yes.

Last edited by john.burn : 11-19-2008 at 09:30 AM. Reason: typo!

Best Regards,