University of South California to Pay $215M for Gynecologist Abuse
For ignoring complaints of sexual assault against 71-year-old gynecologist George Tyndall, the University of Southern California has finally agreed to pay the price.
The university agreed to settle the lawsuit for $215 million as a result of a legal battle waged by hundreds of former students against the school for ignoring their complaints against the former doctor.
According to the university, all patients of Tyndall during his decades-long stint at the medical center will receive payments from $2,500 to $250,000.
“USC has agreed to pay $215 million under the settlement. Apart from certain administrative costs, all of that amount will be available for distribution to the class members. Any residual balance in the settlement fund after all class members are compensated would be contributed to charitable organizations that benefit women’s health and well-being,” the university statement reads.
The lawsuit had accused the school of allowing Tyndall to resign quietly with a financial settlement in June last year after an internal probe found him guilty of inappropriately touching the genitals of patients.
According to hundreds of reports by former and current students, Tyndall used to take nude photographs of patients while conducting inappropriate pelvic and digital penetration exams. He had also been accused of making lewd and racial comments during visits.
Tyndall allegedly often targeted minority students — including many from the university’s large Asian student population — who were not fluent in English or unfamiliar with gynecological exams.
In August this year, university president C. L. Max Nikias stepped down after a petition started by students and alumni sought his removal for not taking seriously the safety of women on the campus.
Though the university has come out with the settlement plan, the court hasn’t given its approval yet, while there is a section which considers the settlement as a way to “sow confusion and deceit.”
“Now that has turned to anger,” John Manly, the attorney representing 180 patients told the New York Times.
“The idea that you go into your doctor’s office at 17 or 18 years old and he brutally sexually assaults you and offends your body and psyche, and that you can then declare victory if you get $2,500, is absurd. But I am not surprised, because sadly what the university cares about is money and public relations. They are mistaken if they think this will go away.”
The latest development comes months after Michigan State University settled the Larry Nassar lawsuit for $500 million.