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Safe and Respectful Community

At the University of Canberra we all have the right to a respectful and supportive environment where we can study, work and live safely. Our community has zero tolerance to unacceptable behaviour such as bullying, violence, harassment or sexual assault. It’s up to all of us to make sure we work together to keep our University safe.

The Australian Human Rights Commission has released the results of the first-ever national student survey on sexual harassment and assault in the higher education sector.

Here are the results specific to the University of Canberra and the methodology on how to read institutional-level data.

Here at UC, we have a strong culture of tolerance, inclusion and respect. It’s important for all students and staff to understand these values and work together towards maintaining a respectful and safe community.

Through training and education, we will be able to promote social change and prevent inappropriate behaviour in our institution. The University has implemented a range of programs and activities towards the prevention of sexual or interpersonal violence:

  • Consent Matters: UC has commenced the delivery of an online module course, Consent Matters, to educate students on the culture of respectful relationships, the understanding of sexual consent and when consent is or not given. The program is available for all students and staff.

Video - Consent Matters Introduction

Access Consent Matters course online

  • Training with Canberra Rape Crisis Centre: A number of staff and students have received training from the Canberra Rape Crisis Centre in a range of areas, from ethical bystander training to self-care techniques. This is an ongoing program.
  • Healthy Relationships: The Medical and Counselling Centre has set up a program on what constitutes healthy relationships and how to build them. This program is aimed at students living in student accommodation.
  • White Ribbon – The University of Canberra has been a White Ribbon accredited workplace since 2013 and continues to support national cultural change to prevent and respond to violence against women in the workplace. As a White Ribbon Workplace, UC promotes respectful relationships and gender equality and has demonstrated a culture of zero tolerance to violence against women.

Are you ok banner, with text sexual harrassment is never ok

Sexual Harassment and Assault

Sexual or interpersonal violence have no place at our University. If you have experienced sexual harassment or assault, the University strongly encourages you to report the incident to the police.

Emergency Response

In an emergency, where someone is in immediate danger dial '000'.

You can also call the Security team on campus on 6201 2222.

For around-the-clock counselling and support for students who have experienced sexual assault call the national support line: 1800 572 224 (available 24/7)

For situations that do not require an immediate response contact ACT Policing on 131 444.

For emergency translations call 1300 655 010

Report all incidents here

Reporting Process

In addition to reporting to the police, we strongly encourage you to advise the University’s support team. They will ensure that you confidentially receive appropriate support and guidance.

If you think you might have been discriminated against or harassed, you may choose to:

If as a student or a  staff member you are approached by a student or colleague who has been sexually harassed or assaulted, recently or in the past, be calm, supportive, and encourage them to seek assistance from either Student Welfare (6206 8841) or Medical and Counselling Centre (6201 2351).

Where can I seek help?

If you, or a fellow student, has any concerns or has experienced harassment or assault, we can offer you support, advice or information. Here's where you can go at Bruce campus:

  • UC Security: If you need assistance on campus please contact UC Security on (02) 6201 2222. Security staff will liaise with police, ambulance and/or UC support services as necessary. Security also escorts students and staff around campus after hours.
  • Director of Student Administration: If you have been sexually assaulted, please contact the UC Director of Student Administration for support, advice, and referral (02) 6201 2284.
  • UC Medical & Counselling: the UC Medical & Counselling Centre provides medical and health advice and assistance and a free counselling service for students - call 6201 2351.
  • Welfare Service: the Welfare Officer can help guide you through any personal, financial or study issues through support, advice and referral to other internal and external agencies - call (02) 6206 8841.
  • Multi-Faith Centre (MFC): The MFC Chaplaincy team offers pastoral care services to all staff and students.  Pastoral care is provided in a safe and confidential environment.
  • UC Students' Representative Council (UCSRC) Women's Officer: contact the Women's Officer for confidential and impartial advice on problems you may be facing.
  • Living on campus? A good place to get advice or assistance is to contact the Senior Residential Advisor or Coordinator.

If you are a UC student at one of our partner institutions, and need advice on sexual harassment or assault, please refer to the appropriate contacts at your location: Sydney, Melbourne or Queensland.

A high percentage of people who are affected by sexual assault and harassment also experience psychological and emotional conditions thereafter, which notably affects the state of their short and long term mental health.

The University of Canberra implements additional events to educate and support the staff and students on the importance of looking after theirs and others mental health and wellbeing. Such events include Australia and New Zealand University Mental Health and Well-being Day (ANZ MHD) and R U OK? Day.

LGBTIQ students may sometimes experience social exclusion. As part of the Respect. Now. Always. campaign, the University of Canberra is working to improve respect and support for all lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender, intersex or queer (LGBTIQ) students to ensure that they enjoy a rewarding time throughout their studies. Some recent initiatives include:

  • The LGBTIQ flag installations on the concourse
  • The University of Canberra bronze sponsorship partner of the Inaugural Australian Ally Conference (2016).
  • The Gay Pride Film and Morning Tea initiative (2015).

External Support

  • Belconnen Police Station (College St & Benjamin Way): General Inquiries: (02) 6256 7777
  • Canberra Hospital: (02) 6244 2222
  • Calvary Hospital: (02) 6201 6111
  • Canberra Rape Crisis Centre: (02) 6247 2525 (7am to 11pm)
    The Canberra Rape Crisis Centre provides counselling information and support for women and children who have experienced sexual violence. The Centre can help with referrals and information about legal or medical concerns.
  • National university support line: 1800 572 224 (24 hours)
    This around-the-clock national university support line will offer counselling to students who have experienced sexual assault or any other form of violence.
  • Domestic Violence Crisis Service (DVCS): (02) 6280 0900 (24 hours) / TTY hearing impaired: (02) 6228 1852
    The DVCS provides crisis intervention, advocacy, referral, information, support and practical assistance for people subjected to, or using, violence and abuse in relationships, giving priority to those subjected to violence. DVCS is able to meet people in a safe space to talk over any issues you are facing. The DVCS is also able to help you access crisis and long-term accommodation.
  • Canberra Sexual Health Centre: (02) 6244 2184
    The Centre provides free and confidential information, counselling and treatment. The Centre is staffed by doctors and nurses trained in the area of sexual health. A walk-in clinic, which does not require an appointment, is open during the working week.
  • Women's Health Service: (02) 6205 1078
    The ACT Women's Health Service provides a range of free services including nursing, medical and counselling services for women by women, from locations in Civic, Gungahlin, Tuggeranong, Phillip and Belconnen.
  • Sexual Assault Counselling for Men – SAMSSA: (02) 6287 3935 / Emergency Contact: 6247 2525
    SAMSSA provides a support network for men who have experienced sexual violence.
  • Lifeline: 13 11 14 (24 hours, 7 days)
    Lifeline's qualified counsellors provide support to callers 24/7.
  • Gay Information Counselling Service (GICS): (02) 6247 2726
    If you are unable to contact the GICS, callers from the ACT may call 1800 18 4527 between 7.30pm and 10pm local time. Your call will be diverted to the Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service of NSW.
  • Lesbian Counselling Service: contact (02) 6247 8882 (6.30pm-8.30pm, Monday).

Respect.Now.Always

In 2016, the University of Canberra partnered with all Australian universities in a major national initiative to prevent and address sexual harassment and assault.  

The Respect. Now. Always. (RNA) campaign highlights the determination of Australia's universities to ensure that students and staff are safe from sexual assault and sexual harassment.

A key aim of the campaign is to educate that sexual assault and harassment are unacceptable and empower those who have experienced sexual assault or harassment to seek help and support if they need it.

The campaign builds on longstanding work at the University of Canberra and across the Australian university sector to prevent sexual assault and harassment and ensure that services are in place to support students when they disclose or report.

RNA is an opportunity for the university sector to review the effectiveness of policies, responses and support services to ensure they are best practice.

National University Student Survey

As part of Respect. Now. Always., the Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) conducted the nation's first ever national university student survey on sexual assault and sexual harassment.

The survey ran from September to November 2016 with more than 30,000 students from across all Australian universities participating. The survey was conducted at UC between 19 September and 10 October. All responses were de-identified to protect student privacy.

The Australian Human Rights Commission will release its national report on Tuesday 1 August, 2017. The University of Canberra will publish its specific data the same day with the results available online. Both the national and University-specific results will help us understand the issue and will be used to guide further improvements in our policies and support services to improve best practice.

The Security team on campus works 24 hours a day to provide a safe environment for all our staff and students.

If you are worried, something doesn’t feel right, or you need help, contact the team on 6201 2222.

We are constantly reviewing and upgrading security on campus. Some of the steps we’ve taken to improve security on our Bruce campus include:

  • A more comprehensive CCTV network across the University, with a 24/7 control room in operation to complement a team of security officers who patrol campus around the clock.
  • A significant improvement in lighting such as floodlighting and lux-level sensor lighting installed across campus, leading to a 30 percent increase in lit areas.
  • Clearing of garden beds and lifting of tree canopies to improve line of sight for people, cameras and light throughout campus.
  • Installation of safe walking tracks to traverse from car parks to concrete walking paths and buildings.
  • Provision of security escorts upon request for staff and students walking to their cars and bus stops at night.

Security contact details

Emergencies Phone: 6201 2222
General campus enquiries Phone: +61 2 6201 2050
Email: security@canberra.edu.au
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