It can be very distressing if you have been accused of bullying, harassment, or sexual misconduct. It’s important to be aware that the university will not make assumptions and will not consider a person ‘at fault’ until an accusation has been investigated. All those involved in a complaint will be treated fairly and offered advice and support.
It’s good practice to take time to reflect about the other person’s perception of your behaviour. Even if you feel that your behaviour was well-intentioned, your words or actions may have hurt or offended another person, and this may be thought of as an opportunity for learning, or perhaps for a change of approach.
- Listen carefully to the complaint and to the concerns expressed.
- Stop the behaviour that’s been complained about straight away; if you are deemed to have bullied or harassed somebody after their objection to your behaviour was made known to you, this will be seen as a more serious issue.
- You are likely to need advice and support to understand the complaint: find a way to discuss the matter with someone you trust, such as a manager or tutor, or someone identified by them or the Advice Zone or HR to provide appropriate support.
- If you feel you are being unjustly accused, consider asking for mediation from HR or the Advice Zone. Supported informal discussions involving you, the person alleging ill-treatment, and a trained mediator may enable you to discuss the issues and find a way forward.
What happens when something is reported?
When a report is made about a student or staff member, there are procedures that will be followed. The reporting party may wish to speak to an Advice Zone or HR advisor to discuss their options for informal or formal resolution.
If informal resolution is pursued then the reported person will be contacted by an appropriate manager, or tutor in the situation to try and resolve the matter.
If the matter proceeds formally, the reported behaviour of a student will be investigated under the Student Conduct Procedure, and the reported behaviour of a member of staff will be investigated under the Staff Grievance Procedure or the Student Complaints Procedure.
As a student you can also reach out to our Wellbeing Service which offers a range of help and support. You can book an appointment with the Wellbeing Service, with a Wellbeing Adviser who can talk you through the support available.
As a staff member you can access support via the Staff Support Scheme, your manager or HR via HR Business Partner email@example.com
Trade unions are organised groups of workers who come together to support each other in the workplace or place of study. There are a number of trade unions at the University of South Wales. For staff there is UCU, Unison and GMB and for students there is the Students' Union.