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Domestic and family violence

Domestic and family violence help and support

Domestic and family violence is never the fault of the person who experienced it. If you have experienced domestic or family violence, there are services at the University and within the wider community available to support you.

All support services provided by the University are LGBTIQ inclusive. You can also access LGBTIQ specific services included in the list below. If you would like to find out more about the LGBTIQ support and advocacy on campus, read about our Pride Network.

There are also specific services available for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who would prefer to use them.

Safer Communities Office staff are specialist staff members experienced in providing an immediate response to people that have experienced domestic and family violence including sexual misconduct. They can provide information about the services available and assist you to access the support you need.

You can contact them on +61 2 8627 6808 during 8.30am-5.30pm, Monday to Friday or email them at safer-communities.officer@sydney.edu.au.

The Safer Communities Office can:

  • advise you about adjustments you can access so that you continue your studies
  • support and assist you to make a report to the University or to an external organisation. This includes applying for an apprehended violence order (AVO), or accessing other police, legal and court processes
  • help you source emergency housing and refer you to financial support
  • provide you with strategies to ensure your safety, and help you develop a personal safety plan that can include liaising with Campus Security if required.

Counselling and psychological services (CAPS) offers free, confidential psychological and mental health services to students.

To make an appointment with a CAPS counsellor, please complete the CAPS Booking Request Form or call CAPS reception on 8627 8433 from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

After hours, call the University of Sydney After Hours Mental Wellbeing Support Line. This service is available after 5pm from Monday to Friday, 24 hours on Saturday and Sunday, and during University close-down periods and on public holidays.

You can contact them on 1300 474 065 (accessible within Australia) or text 0488 884 429 (for sms chat option).

For specialist counselling related to domestic or family violence, you can also contact the Safer Communities Office.

You are able to request to speak with a domestic violence liaison officer (DVLO) at your local police station. DVLOs are specially trained in how to deal with domestic and family violence as well as child protection. These officers do not usually take statements however are able to help victims through the processes of reporting, applying for apprehended violence orders (AVOs) and the court process.

Staff from the Safer Communities Office can support you with this process if required.

For more information on AVOs and the role of DVLOs read the NSW Police website.

On-campus emergency housing is available if you need a safe space to stay. Contact the Safer Communities Office and they can outline your options and help you access this.

Outside business hours contact Campus Security on +61 2 9351 3333 to access emergency accommodation.

You can also access help with emergency accommodation through your students' representative group.

Independent student organisations at the University also provide additional forms of assistance for students, including support groups, advocacy and safe spaces.

Student Representative Council (SRC)
If you’re an undergraduate student, you can make a free appointment with an SRC Caseworker. Caseworkers can provide confidential assistance and support with student welfare issues. The SRC also employs solicitors that can assist undergraduate students with legal matters free of charge, including advice and representation. Call +61 2 9660 5222 during 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday to make an appointment.

The SRC also has a number of support groups that represent student interests and can provide you with additional support and resources. Find out more on the SRC website.

Sydney University Postgraduate Representative Association (SUPRA)
If you are a postgraduate student you can access free, confidential and independent advice from the Postgraduate Advocacy Service. For legal advice and information, you can contact SUPRA Legal Service.

Call +61 2 9351 3715 during 9am to 5pm (closed 12-1pm), Monday to Friday or email help@supra.usyd.edu.au to make an appointment. Find out more on the SUPRA website.

University of Sydney Union (USU)
The USU provides autonomous safe spaces on the Camperdown/ Darlington campus.

The Safer Communities Office can help with a referral to the below services or you can contact a service yourself.

NSW Domestic Violence Line
24/7 telephone service providing counselling and referrals to women experiencing domestic and family violence. The service can assist with safety planning, locating emergency accommodation and information about AVOs.
1800 656 463
www.facs.nsw.gov.au/domestic-violence/helpline

NSW Family and Community Services Link2Home crisis line
24/7 telephone service providing information and referral to specialist homelessness services, temporary accommodation and other appropriate services for people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
1800 152 152
www.facs.nsw.gov.au/housing

1800RESPECT
24/7 national sexual assault, domestic violence telephone and online counselling service.
1800 737 732
www.1800respect.org.au

NSW Rape Crisis Centre
24/7 telephone and online crisis counselling service for anyone in NSW who has experienced or is at risk of sexual assault, and their non-offending supporters.
1800 424 017
www.rape-dvservices.org.au

NSW Health sexual assault services
For services including counselling and medical assistance, NSW Health has a network of specialist sexual assault services delivered by local health districts. Every local health district has a sexual assault service that operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. ​
NSW Health Sexual Assault Services contact list

Lifeline
24/7 national telephone and online counselling service who can also provide crisis support and suicide prevention.
13 11 14
www.lifeline.org.au

Twenty10
A NSW state-wide organisation providing a range of support services for people of diverse genders, sexes and sexualities, their families and communities.
+61 2 8594 9555
www.twenty10.org.au

QLife
A telephone and online counselling and referral service for people who are LGBTI.
1800 184 527 (3pm to 12am, 7 days a week)
qlife.org.au

The Safer Communities Office can help with a referral to the below services or you can contact a service yourself.

Aboriginal Family Domestic Violence Hotline
1800 019 123

Aboriginal Legal Service
Provides legal services to Aboriginal people.
1800 639 784
www.alsnswact.org.au

Wirringa Baiya Aboriginal Women's Legal Centre
A state-wide community legal centre for Aboriginal women, children and youth.
1800 686 587
www.wirringabaiya.org.au

National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services
Advocates at the national level for the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples within the justice system and work to ensure that our peoples have equitable access to justice.
www.natsils.org.au

If you are worried about your behaviour or, if someone you care about uses violence and wants to change their behaviour, there is help available. You can read more information and reach out for help on the websites below:

No to Violence – Men’s Referral Service
Advice for men about family violence.
1300 766 491
www.ntv.org.au/get-help

MensLine Australia
MensLine Australia is a telephone and online counselling service offering support for Australian men anywhere, anytime.
1300 78 99 78
www.mensline.org.au

Last updated: 13 October 2021

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