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Statement on student-staff relationships at the University

The Students’ Union is concerned to hear of allegations made in the Daily Telegraph this week about staff and student relationships at the University of Worcester. We would like to assure students that we have sought reassurance from the University that any allegations are investigated appropriately and with the required urgency.

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The Students’ Union is concerned to hear of allegations made in the Daily Telegraph this week about staff and student relationships at the University of Worcester. The Students’ Union does not recognise the headline portrayed in the media and does not agree that there is a culture of exploitation at the University. We would like to assure students that we have sought reassurance from the University that any allegations are investigated appropriately and with the required urgency.

What we’re doing

We actively collaborate with the University about their policies, procedures, and reporting mechanisms for students who experience inappropriate behaviour from anyone, including University staff and fellow students. The University has a new working group to review their approach to this and the group includes Students’ Union representation.

Later this week the SU’s Student Council will be discussing a policy submitted to them covering sexual harassment, support for student sex workers, and a zero-tolerance policy on staff- student relationships, as well as lobbying the University around the appropriate use of non-disclosure agreements. We will provide an update to our students following the meeting on Thursday evening.

We recently ran a campaign around consent which covered many aspects, including sexual consent. We pledge to continue this into next academic year to raise awareness of the importance of consent in all aspects of student life.

Support

The SU has an independent Help and Advice service that is available for students who would like to access support on a wide range of topics including support navigating university procedures and complaints. We are also able to signpost students to external services if required.

The University also has a range of services in place to support students in all aspects of university life. We work closely with the University to ensure all students can access this support during their time at Worcester.

Sexual harassment, discrimination and abuse are never okay. Moving forward, we will ensure continuing transparency from the University on how they look to ensure that any and all complaints are always handled in a timely and fair manner.

We strive to make sure that campus is a safe space for all students and will continue to advocate for students in all aspects of their student experience.

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