Report and Support Quarterly Summer 2021 Strategic and policy context and progress

The overarching objective of implementing Report and Support is to ensure members of our community are:

  • Heard – staff will accept, and listen, openly and non-judgementally, to all reports.
  • Safe – by working together to ensure responsive services.
  • Valued - as co-creators of the University community - a place where everyone’s experience matters.

In the People Strategy consultation, we identified the need to empower staff and students to challenge inappropriate behaviours and to ensure staff and student wellbeing is robust. Over and above existing routes for raising issues of concern or making complaints, Report and Support adds to existing options for reporters and meets these strategic aims by:

  • Facilitating the anonymised reporting of complaints and concerns.
  • Requiring staff to respond swiftly and appropriately to reports that need prompt action.
  • Collaboratively reviewing and assessing the impact of any action and intervention through the Report and Support Forum and regular Report and Support Reviews, of which this is the first.
  • Developing consistent and evidence-based approaches to dealing with areas of concern from staff, students and the wider community.

The provision of information helps reporters to make an informed choice about how and what to report and also provides a central locus for the University community to find information about issues they are concerned about, and information about other external and internal mechanisms for raising concerns. Report and Support provides another entry point to existing services provided by Human Resources, Occupational Health and Student Services. Report and Support connects to a range of University policies that address negative behaviours and wellbeing concerns. These include:

  • The policies relating to student Bullying/harassment and staff Dignity and Respect at Work which address intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive behaviour, which has the purpose or effect of violating a person’s dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, or humiliating environment. Harassment is unwanted conduct related to a relevant protected characteristic that has the purpose or effect of violating a person’s dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for that person. The unwanted conduct may be physical, verbal, or non-verbal.
  • Sexual Misconduct (students) and (staff) which addresses harassment and unacceptable behaviour of a sexual nature. It can include sexual harassment; sexual violence; intimate partner violence; sexual assault; grooming; coercion or bullying with sexual elements; sexual invitations and demands; comments; non-verbal communication; creation of atmospheres of discomfort; and promised resources or advancement in exchange for sexual access.
  • Safeguarding: intends to protect children and vulnerable adults who are at risk of harm, abuse, neglect, exploitation, discrimination or being drawn into radicalisation. A child is someone under the age of 18. A vulnerable adult is someone who is unable to safeguard their own interests and is at risk of harm because they are affected by a disability, mental or physical disorder or illness. Members of the University and our wider community will include children and vulnerable adults. Some students and apprentices are under 18. All members of the University community have an essential role to play in ensuring that children and vulnerable adults are protected.
  • The Mental Health Strategy promotes positive mental health and wellbeing, seeking to support each other in the creation of a healthy, well informed and compassionate working environment in which students and staff can fulfil their potential. Facilitating the disclosure of distress and concerns, helps suicide prevention and is recommended by UUK Suicide Prevention guidance (page 17).
  • The Complaints Handling Procedure which addresses bullying, harassment, employee relations, other relations, and sexual misconduct. The Resolution Policy offers an alternative, informal approach to dispute resolution for those who do not want to use the route of formal Complaint.

More information related to these and other reporting categories can be found on the Report and Support support pages.