The University is committed to handling reports of sexual misconduct in a compassionate and fair manner, in an environment that acknowledges the vulnerable position of survivors and treats them with respect and dignity.
Sexual misconduct is prohibited at the University of Sydney. Behaviour that is intimidating, abusive, disrespectful or threatening, including sexual assault and sexual harassment, is not acceptable and will not be tolerated.
If you have experienced sexual misconduct, including sexual assault or sexual harassment, it is your choice whether to report the incident. You have the option to report it to the University and you also have the option of reporting to the police. Whatever you decide, we can help connect you with appropriate support you, provide information on reporting options, and assist you with the reporting process.
Your personal safety and recovery from the trauma of sexual misconduct is our first priority. The Safer Communities Office has specialist staff members who provide support to people that have experienced sexual misconduct.
They can work with you to develop a safety plan to ensure your safety on and off campus, and assist you to navigate appropriate support services such as security, emergency accomodation and health services. The Safer Communities Office also has a partnership with the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital Sexual Assault Counselling Service which ensures that students can access priority counselling. You can organise an appointment with the Safer Communities Office to discuss the support options you may need.
If you choose to report an incident to the University, you have the option to either make a disclosure or a complaint. The primary way to do this is through the online form, or by contacting the Safer Communities Office directly. The Safer Communities Office can provide you with information about making a report if you are unsure what to do. If you report an incident, it will not affect your academic record in any way. If you are an international student, your visa will not be affected.
You can make a complaint of sexual misconduct, including sexual assault or sexual harassment, if you would like the University to investigate or to take specific action and the complaint is about University related conduct, including conduct by students, staff members or affiliates. University related conduct means any conduct that is connected to the University, including conduct that occurs on University lands, at or in connection with a Residential College or University owned or affiliated student accommodation, when performing duties for or representing the University, or during a University related function or event (whether sanctioned or organised by the University or not).
We can only take steps to respond to your complaint (such as taking disciplinary action against a student, staff member or affiliate) when you make a complaint (rather than a disclosure). We may also take interim measures to ensure your safety or the safety of others.
When you make a complaint to the University, we will ask you for information including details of the person involved in the incident. If you have difficulty disclosing this information, you can call us to discuss your options and support services available. If a complaint results in an investigation, the University is required to apply the principles of procedural fairness to everyone involved.
You may wish to make a disclosure (rather than a complaint) if you wish to be anonymous and wish to make the University aware of an incident but do not wish the University to investigate or take any specific action in response to the incident. We understand that this can be a difficult time, so this is a way to report something that’s happened and find out your options for support without needing to provide your personal details.
In some circumstances, we may need to investigate a disclosure, to ensure your safety or the safety of other members of the University community, or to meet our legal obligations. If you provide your contact details, the University will inform you before commencing an investigation. It is up to you if you wish to participate at this point.
If you make a disclosure, you can still choose to make a complaint to the University about the same incident at a later time.
If you provide your contact details in your report, the Safer Communities Office will contact you, usually within the next business day. Please note there will be delays during the University close-down period in December/January.
If you have not received an email acknowledgment within 72 hours of making your report, please email us at email@example.com and provide the reference number
If you need urgent medical assistance, please contact emergency services on 000 or present to your local hospital emergency department.
We encourage you to read each question before completing the form and to share only the information that you feel comfortable sharing. You can provide as much or as little information as you like.
The University understands that you may not wish to provide specific information about what happened, or personal details about yourself.
If you wish to provide it, you can use the form to give us information about an incident that you or somebody else has experienced.
You have the right to access and correct personal information about you held by the University. If you have any questions or concerns about access or correction, or about using the forms, please contact the Safer Communities Office on 8627 6808 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The form is available to be accessed by anyone and you do not need a UniKey to login.
Your disclosure or complaint will be recorded in a confidential part of the University Wellbeing Services System. Only a few specialist staff will have access to the information you provide.
If you provide your contact details, the Safer Communities Office will contact you, usually within the next business day. The Safer Communities Office has expertise in supporting people that have experienced sexual misconduct, and can also help you to connect with other departments within the University that might assist you.
We will not disclose the personal information you provide to anybody else, unless you have given consent, or unless we are authorised or required to do so by law.
We will also use de-identified information to help us identify trends and develop targeted responses to sexual misconduct in the University community.
The University is required to keep these reports for seven years, after which time they will be securely deleted.
If you are a student and you decide to proceed with a complaint, it will be forwarded to the Student Affairs Unit for preliminary assessment. If your complaint relates to the conduct of a staff member or affiliate, the Student Affairs Unit will refer it to Workplace Relations for a preliminary assessment. The purpose of a preliminary assessment is to assess how a complaint should be progressed.
If you are a staff member or affiliate and you decide to proceed with a complaint, it will be forwarded to Workplace Relations for preliminary assessment. If your complaint relates to the conduct of a student, Workplace Relations will refer it to the Student Affairs Unit for a preliminary assessment.
For both students and staff, the Safer Communities Office will provide support and work with you and Workplace Relations and/or the Student Affairs Unit to ensure you understand the complaint process.
If you are a member of the public and you decide to proceed with a complaint, it will be received by the Safer Communities Office and forwarded to the most appropriate work area for resolution.
In some limited circumstances, the University may need to report an incident of sexual assault or sexual touching to the police, to ensure your safety, the safety of other members of the University community, or to meet its legal obligations. The University will inform you before it reports an incident of sexual assault to the Police. The form allows you to express your wishes regarding reporting to the police.
In an emergency, contact emergency services by dialing triple zero (000).
Whether the sexual misconduct took place on or off-campus, you can make a report to your local police station. You can call in advance and ask to make a report to a detective. You can also ask to speak to a staff member who is specifically trained in responding to sexual assault or sexual touching.
If you want to provide information to the police but don’t want to proceed with a formal investigation, you can provide details of the incident by completing the online Sexual Assault Reporting Option. This can be done anonymously if you choose, but there will be no response if you remain anonymous.
The questionnaire does ask for details about the incident. We recommend that you have a friend with you to help you, as providing this information may be distressing for you.
The questionnaire may be used to assist police to develop strategies that target offenders and protect the community.
You can find more information on the reporting options available and what to expect from the NSW Police website.