The University of Sydney partners on national Respect. Now. Always. student survey

23 August 2016

The University of Sydney will partner with Universities Australia and other Australian universities in a pioneering national student survey on sexual assault and harassment.

As part of the University’s commitment to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of students, the University of Sydney will participate in the survey, which will form a key part of the Universities Australia’s Respect. Now. Always. Campaign.

“The results of the survey will complement and extend upon the results of the University of Sydney’s survey undertaken on our campuses last year, and will provide further research data and impetus to continue to improve our campuses in creating a safer community for all,” Jordi Austin, Director of Student Support Services, said.

The University of Sydney conducted the Safer Community For All survey last year, inviting students to complete the survey in order to gauge students’ experiences of sexual harassment and assault.

Conducted with support and input from the student community, the survey findings were used to guide five recommendations for action on campus. Three of the five recommendations have been fully implemented and the remaining recommendations will be implemented in collaboration with student guidance and input.

The confidential survey led by Universities Australia will begin at the University of Sydney September this year. A representative sample of students will be selected to take part in the survey, however all students are encouraged to provide feedback directly to the Australian Human Rights Commission.

The Universities Australia survey is being run by the independent Australian Human Rights Commission with support from Roy Morgan Research. Responses will be de-identified to protect student privacy.

“The University of Sydney is committed to fostering a culture that prevents and rejects any form of unacceptable behaviour,” said Jordi Austin. “This is a culture that provides support for survivors, holds perpetrators accountable for their actions and encourages bystanders to take appropriate action.”

The survey has been developed with input from experts including the Australian Human Rights Centre at the University of NSW, the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Roy Morgan Research, and the Australian Human Rights Commission.

It is primarily funded by Universities Australia. Seed funding for the survey was provided by The Hunting Ground Australia Project. The survey is supported by the National Union of Students and the National Tertiary Education Union. 

If you feel distress at any time during or after participating in this survey, support is available by calling 1800 RESPECT.

If you have a complaint regarding an issue of sexual harassment or assault, you can remain anonymous when requesting a call back from our Student Affairs Unit.

About Respect. Now. Always. 

Earlier this year, Australia’s 39 universities came together to launch the Respect. Now. Always. campaign. It has three key elements: raising awareness of these issues and lifting the profile of support services for students; obtaining prevalence data to guide further improvements in policies and services; and assisting universities to share resources and best practice across the sector.