Elite Charity Dinner Exposed as Grope-Fest
2 female reporters for 'Financial Times' work as hostesses
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 24, 2018 1:05 PM CST
The Dorchester Hotel in London is seen here.   (Wikimedia/Oxyman)

(Newser) – On the surface, it was a respectable event that raised $2.8 million for charities including a world-renowned children's hospital. But a bit of digging reveals London's men-only Presidents Club Charity Dinner is the opposite of respectable, reports the Financial Times. The newspaper sent a pair of undercover female reporters to the annual event Thursday to serve as hostesses. Two of 130 women instructed to wear "skimpy black outfits with matching underwear and high heels" while serving 360 powerful male guests, they describe groping, lewd comments, and propositions for sex at the black-tie event at the Dorchester Hotel. Some hostesses said men repeatedly put hands up their skirts. One hostess said a guest exposed his penis to her, the Times reports.

A single hostess said she was invited to an upstairs room; fondled on her butt, hips, stomach, and legs; and had to escape an unwanted kiss. Several hostesses—many of whom were students—also described men insisting on holding their hands. During an after-party, which hostesses were required to attend, one guest reportedly told a woman to "rip off your knickers and dance on that table." This came in stark contrast to an event pamphlet carrying "a full-page warning that no attendees or staff should be sexually harassed," per the Times. Event organizers now say they're looking into the "totally unacceptable" allegations. Meanwhile, UK Department for Education board member David Meller has resigned over his attendance, while "shocked" and "alarmed" charities are refusing donations tied to the event, reports the BBC.

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