Respect. Now. Always Response Plan - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Respect. Now. Always Response Plan

USC has always promoted a safe working and learning environment. The Respect.Now.Always campaign has renewed our commitment to safety and respect.

  • We have focused on establishing a governance framework for responding to matters related specifically to Sexual Harassment and Assault.
  • Together with our student leaders we launched several public awareness campaigns promoting the principles of responsible and respectful behaviour for staff, students and visitors, providing a platform to further develop our suite of education, training and ongoing leadership opportunities for staff and students.
  • A ‘Safer Community Model’ has been adopted to develop safety programs, community interventions and build collaborative partnerships both within USC and with relevant external agencies.


1. Policy Framework:

Establish a governance framework for dealing with matters related to Student Sexual Harassment and Assault:

  • Sexual Assault and Harassment:
    • Develop Sexual Harassment Prevention (Students) Governing Policy
    • Develop Procedures and Staff Guidelines
  • Review and Update policies procedures and guidelines:
    • Develop Student Critical incident Counselling Intervention Guidelines Review Student Conduct
    • Governing Policy, Student Charter; Student Grievance Policy and procedures
2. Best Practice Education and Training

Develop and deliver best practice education and training opportunities and preventative campaigns to contribute to ongoing cultural change

  • Student training to create a safe environment:
    • “Consent Matters” Online training for students
    • Bystander Training support and prevention
  • Staff training to create a safe environment
  • Responding to Disclosures of Abuse and Trauma Training:
    • Common myths / facts around sexual assault
    • Barriers to disclosure
    • responding to disclosures
    • immediate support, documenting disclosures, legal issues to consider
  • Consent Matters Campaign
  • Strategic and purposeful embedding using Online Blackboard Course
    • Staff On boarding
    • HDR Supervisors
    • WIL and Field Educators
  • Responding to Students in Distress Training
    • Indicators of distress
    • Responding to crisis and assessing risk
    • Where and when to refer
  • Policy and Procedure Specific Training
    • Critical Incident Policy
    • Grievance policy/Misconduct
    • Sexual Harassment Prevention
    • Staff Code of Conduct
  • Anti-Discrimination and Freedom from Bullying and Harassment.
3. Communication

Develop a communication strategy which addresses sector and community expectations as well as institution and student needs as a result of the National University Student Survey on Sexual Assault

  • Create and maintain RNA webpage.
  • Deliver briefing sessions, information resources and tools which clarify for students and staff how USC will respond reports of sexual assault and harassment.
  • Develop and deliver clear information resources for anyone who experiences sexual assault or harassment:
    • Posters
    • Digital Signage
    • Promotional merchandise
4. Ongoing USC RNA Activities

Embed the principles of Safer Communities into the business-as-usual student activities

  • Establish and further develop the ongoing framework for a “Safer Communities” plan.
  • Create and promote new website for students. Centralise and expand on resources already available.
  • Promotion of campaign embedded in existing Student Expectations and Responsibilities platform (SER).
  • Include details of campaign in SER marketing collateral at all sites.
  • Formalise MOU with Student Residences, to create and train a network of First Call Respondents in each Residence.
  • Facilitate opportunities to promote a safer communities approach during Diversity Week.
  • Embed training and voluntary roles related to Safer Communities in the Leadership Program at USC.
  • Staff and Student On-boarding and Transition Activities.
  • Establish a 24hr hotline in conjunction with UA.