Never OK Support

Sexual harassment: how to report it and access the support available

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If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual harassment, it’s important to seek support.

Sexual harassment is any kind of unwanted behaviour with either explicit or implicit sexual overtones that makes you feel humiliated or intimidated, or that creates a hostile environment. All forms of sexual harassment are unacceptable and will not be tolerated. 

How do I report an incident? 

We also know that the majority of cases of sexual harassment go unreported. This may be because victims feel frightened or ashamed. Or they’re apprehensive about reporting an incident, as they think it won’t be taken seriously.

These are normal emotional responses, and we know that every individual processes such incidents in their own way and in their own time. However if you have been a victim of sexual harassment, sexual violence or assualt, you should not be afraid to get help. It is never your fault and it is important you receive the right guidance and support. You are not alone: we are here to listen and help.

If you don’t feel immediately ready to report an incident, if possible, try to keep a record of your experience – including the date/time and details of what happened – in case you decide to make a report at a later time. 

If the incident involves sexual violence or assault, you may choose to participate in a forensic medical exam which can provide useful evidence if the case goes to court. These are performed by specially-trained healthcare professionals and although you can decide at any stage to participate, the sooner this takes place, the greater chance there is of collecting evidence.

Report + Support
Students and staff can report an incident using the University’s Report and Support system. Unless you are in immediate danger or are reporting an emergency to the police, we encourage you to do this as your first action in the reporting process so that we can most effectively support you and guide you through your next steps.You can choose to do this anonymously or you can request support from an advisor. If you choose to talk to an advisor they will be able to talk through the options and support available to you, in confidence.

University Procedure
If you choose to make a formal complaint to the University against a student or a member of staff there are procedures which set out the steps you’ll need to follow. You can find out more about our complaints procedure on the Student Support website, and if you need help the SU Advice Service can guide you through the complaints process and may be able to comment on your complaint submission.

Reporting to the police
If sexual harassment escalates into violence, threats or sexual assault, you can report this to the police by calling 101 or contacting your local police force. If you or someone you’re with is in immediate danger, or it is a time-sensitive emergency, call the police on 999.

Additional support and resources

Mental Health & Counselling Service – The University’s team of professional counsellors, psychotherapists and mental health workers offers confidential support.

The St Mary’s Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) and Manchester Rape Crisis both have Independent Sexual Violence Advisors (ISVA’s) who are trained to look after the needs of a survivor of rape or sexual violence to ensure they receive the best possible care and understanding. Contact them and ask to speak to an advisor in confidence.

Survivors Manchester – Offers a range of services for men who have experienced sexual violence at any point in their lives.

Galop – A charity that supports lesbian, gay, bi, trans, and queer people affected by sexual violence.

Campus Support and Security Services – Our Campus Support and Security team provide security across all of the University’s campus areas. They are the first point of contact, providing advice and assistance to staff and students 24 hours of the day. You can get in touch with the Campus Support and Security team at 0161 306 9966 (on the back of your ID card) or by raising an alert in the SafeZone app. In an emergency, always call 999. 

Your School – If you are a student you can talk to your academic adviser, or a support adviser in your school.

Student Support and Advice – This University service offers support and advice on issues affecting your student life, with signposting and referral to more specialist services. If you’re not sure where to go, this is a good place to start.

SU Advice Service – This is a free confidential, impartial service where students can get advice and information on academic and personal issues, including advice on procedures and representation at hearings. The Advice Service is also a hate crime reporting centre.

Residential Life Advisors – If you are a student in Halls, all of the residences have a team of ResLife Advisors (RLA’s) living in-house, which is made up of either postgraduate students or members of staff at the University. The team can be an important source of guidance and support for students.

Mitigating Circumstances – If you feel your studies have been affected by what has happened you can consider applying for mitigating circumstances. An advisor in your school will be able to provide more information

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