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The University respects the rights of all survivors/victims of sexually harmful behaviours to be in control of decisions affecting them, wherever practicable. This is especially regarding their right to decide whether to seek counselling, and/or medical services, or Police or another external agency intervention. It's your right to decide how you wish to disclose or report your experience, if at all.
The Harassment Resolution Team on each campus can provide confidential advice and information about your reporting options and procedures.
Informal reporting allows you to disclose sexually harmful behaviours and seek support, without making a formal report or initiating a formal investigation process.
You can contact the Student Care team on your campus if you have experienced sexually harmful behaviours and would like to discuss your options. Seeking guidance and assistance from the Student Care team through the informal reporting process does not disqualify you from making a formal report if you eventually choose to do so.
The information provided through an informal disclosure will be retained by the Student Care team and will be treated confidentially. Further action will not be taken unless there is an imminent risk to you or someone else in the University community.
You can make a formal complaint about behaviour you consider sexually harmful where the person who is the subject of the complaint is a student or staff member.
A formal complaint should be in writing to the Student Care team and should specify in detail:
The complaint will be referred to the appropriate area of the University, in consultation with you. Further consideration, investigation (if appropriate) and action on your complaint may then be taken. For example, if the complaint is about behaviour by a staff member, then it may be referred to Human Resources.
If a complaint is made to the Police (or another external agency) and also to the University, we will liaise with the Police (or external agency) to make sure that any process followed by the University does not interfere with any external investigation or process that may be underway. On some occasions, if a Police investigation and/or criminal process occurs, this may require the University to place its own process on hold until the conclusion of those external matters.
It is important that you're aware that, in order for a complaint to be dealt with by the University under a formal process, the contents of your complaint will need to be provided to the person who your complaint is about, in line with natural justice requirements.
During the process you will be provided wellbeing and academic support as needed.
If you would like to access assistance with putting together and submitting a formal complaint you can contact the Harassment Resolution Team.
When misconduct or serious misconduct is found to have occurred under a formal process, the University may impose penalties and take measures that are proportionate to the level of wrongdoing that is found to have occurred. These seek to:
Further details about the sorts of penalties and other measures that can be imposed in relation to students can be found in the Student Code of Conduct and the Disciplinary Regulations. In relation to staff members, details on those penalties are contained in staff members’ employment agreements.
All penalties imposed are monitored for compliance and should further, similar behavioural issues be identified, this may result in further appropriate action being taken.
A person who had made a formal complaint is entitled to know whether or not their complaint has been upheld.
If someone discloses to you that they have experienced sexually harmful behaviours, your role is to support them to get information and make informed choices. You should follow the procedures outlined above, or contact the Harassment Resolution Team or the Student Care team for guidance and advice.
Reporting to the University and reporting to the Police are two separate processes. If you report to the Police you can still report to the University.
You can report sexually harmful behaviours—including stalking, sexual assault or sexual harassment, and family violence to the Police.
You can also contact the Police for information and advice about what your options are and how to get help. You don’t necessarily need to proceed with making a formal complaint—this is your decision. The Police can provide you information to help you make decisions and understand your options.
If you would like to access the support of an independent specialist to assist you through the Police reporting process, please contact one of the Student Association Advocates or an external agency.
If you would like to access support from the University to assist you in contacting Police you can contact the Student Care team.
Page authorised by Student Services Directorate
Last updated on Monday 20 July 2020