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To make a fairer and more inclusive University a reality, we have a range of events, advice, and support for our staff, students, visitors and the wider university community, including guidance about how to report bullying, harassment and sexual misconduct.
Support and Guidance
Here you will find our EDI Calendar of Events, as well as policies, advice and guidance on a number of topics, aimed at creating a fairer and more inclusive University. If there are other EDI-related topics you would like more information about, please contact us on email@example.com
EDI Calendar of Events
Across the year there are a range of awareness-raising and celebration dates which directly relate to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion. Our EDI Calendar of Events pulls together these dates, as well as providing information on the ways in which members of the Lancaster community can get involved in EDI related networks and activities.
You can download a copy of the calendar here: EDI Calendar 2022
Bullying and Harassment
At Lancaster, we promote a zero-tolerance approach to bullying, harassment and sexual misconduct. It reflects an approach in which the University will proactively work to educate and inform, as well as taking all accusations seriously and acting on them appropriately without preconception or bias. Our policies on bullying, harassment and sexual misconduct aim to assist in the promotion of an inclusive and constructive environment on campus, as well as in external relationships connected with the University, in which bullying, harassment and sexual misconduct are recognised as unacceptable. It is also designed to give individuals the confidence to complain in the knowledge that their complaints will be taken seriously and due process followed in resolving the matter.
What do we mean by bullying and harassment?
Bullying or harassment is behaviour or actions that are unwelcome, unwarranted and cause a detrimental effect to the wellbeing of the victim. Harassment, bullying and sexual misconduct can also apply to a group of people as well as individuals.
Bullying may be characterised as offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour and abuse or misuse of power through means that undermine, humiliate, upset, threaten, denigrate or injure the recipient and can make a person feel vulnerable. This can be either physical or psychological in nature.
Some examples of bullying include (but are not limited to):
- Shouting at someone or being sarcastic against someone because of one or more protected characteristics (e.g. mocking someone in relation to their disability; shouting a racial and/or homophobic or transphobic slur).
- Physical or psychological threats.
- ‘Calling names’ at someone because of a protected characteristic (e.g. because of their age, or for they are disabled, or because they are gay, lesbian, bi or trans, racist name-calling).
- Spreading malicious rumours or insulting someone particularly on grounds of protected characteristics.
- Systematic exclusion of colleagues from work meetings because of their characteristics (e.g. excluding colleagues belonging to an ethnic minority, or with a disability, or because of their gender, gender identity or sexual orientation, or if they have or are perceived to have more than one of these characteristics).
Harassment, as an element of bullying, is specifically defined under the Equality Act 2010. as unwanted conduct related to a relevant protected characteristic that has the purpose or effect, assessed from the individual’s perspective, of violating dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading or humiliating environment for that individual. It can include unwelcome physical, verbal or non-verbal conduct.
Some examples of harassment include (but are not limited to):
- Unwanted physical conduct
- Racist, sexist, homophobic or ageist jokes
- Derogatory or stereotypical remarks about a particular ethnic or religious group or gender;
- Outing or threatening to out someone as lesbian, gay, bi, trans or non-binary.
- Mocking, mimicking or belittling a person’s disability or physical appearance.
- Unwelcome sexual advances or suggestive behaviour.
- Offensive e-mails, text messages or social media content.
Sexual misconduct is a broad term used to encompass a range of behaviours including sexual harassment, non-consensual sexual contact (sexual assault), and non-consensual sexual penetration (rape).
Victimisation is when a person is mistreated because they have made a complaint of discrimination, harassment or bullying or have supported another person in making a complaint.
Further details on the definitions are available in our policies:
- Bullying, Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Policy – Staff (internal only)
- Dignity in Student Life Policy – Students (internal only)
- Sexual Misconduct – Students (internal only)
Reporting and Support for Staff:
If you feel that you have experienced bullying, harassment or sexual misconduct, a range of options are available to you, including:
- Report anonymously
- Raise it with the individual
- Seek informal or formal advice from your trade union representative
- Request a mediation meeting
- Initiate a formal complaint
Further details are set out in our Bullying, Harassment and Sexual Misconduct Policy (see link above) - Staff (internal only).
Reporting and Support for Students:
If you feel you have experienced or witnessed behaviours such as abuse, bullying, discrimination, harassment, hate crime, racism, sexual harassment or violence, we urge you to report this to the University, Lancaster University Students’ Union and/or the Police.
For more information on how to report an incident please visit the Bullying, Harassment, discrimination and sexual misconduct page.
Disability, Mental Health and Accessibility
Reasonable adjustments and support for staff
We are a Disability Confident employer and we work with our Occupational Health service and external schemes, e.g. Access to Work and Able Futures, to ensure that reasonable adjustments are made for our colleagues, where there are barriers to inclusion at work. If you require reasonable adjustments, please discuss these with your line manager.
- Supporting disabled employees to work from home – adjustments (Business Disability Forum)
- Supporting mental health in the work workplace (ACAS)
Reasonable adjustments and support for students
Our Student Wellbeing Services offer a range of support and guidance to disabled students. For information on the range of support available, please visit our Disability Service's pages:
Advice and support for our staff and students are available to enable them to overcome difficulties in using IT equipment, accessing information or producing accessible materials. Further information is available on our Information and Security Services' Digital Accessibility help and training pages, including:
- Creating Accessible Resources online course (internal only)
- Accessibility checklists and guidance for Digital Content.
- Guidance and resources on Accessibility Regulations, including guidance on Moodle spaces and learning materials, Websites and website content, Documents and other resources and Social media sites and content.
Accessibility on campus is managed by our Facilities Team. To find the most accessible routes on campus, please visit AccessAble. This website allows you to check for accessible toilets, lifts and other features to assist you when on campus.
Exemption from Wearing Mask Coverings
The Government made it mandatory to wear face coverings in libraries, shops and supermarkets in England. This follows a legal requirement for everyone to wear face coverings on public transport.
However, there are some circumstances (including disability and/or severe distress) where individuals may have a justifiable reason for not being able to wear a face covering. These reasons may not always be visible to others and we hope that the Lancaster University community is mindful and respectful in these circumstances.
For those who may find it more comfortable to show evidence of their exemption, we introduced two tools that students and staff can use:
An e-exemption card that will be available as a tile in the iLancaster app from October. The card is for both staff and students and can be used to demonstrate that an individual is exempt from wearing a face covering.
The University has purchased a number of Hidden Disability Sunflower lanyards which are available for staff and students to use as a visible indicator that they have a hidden disability. Some staff and students with a hidden disability may also be exempt from wearing a mask and in the Lancaster context may use the lanyard to indicate this.
For more information on these initiatives and where to find a Hidden Disability Sunflower lanyard on campus, please visit our mask information webpage.
What is a Hidden Disability?
A hidden disability is a disability that is not immediately obvious, as they do not have physical signs. For instance, learning difficulties, mental health, as well as mobility, speech, visual or hearing impairments, can be considered hidden disabilities.
If you wish to know more about hidden disabilities, check this video:
Supporting Parents and Carers
We recognise that juggling caring responsibilities with work and study can be a challenge. Caring for a child, disabled or elderly parents, or other adult dependents such as a family member or friend can take both a physical and emotional toll on the caregiver. The activities provided by a carer vary widely and the staff or student carer may be living with the person they provide care for or may have to travel to attend to their caring responsibilities.
Our Parents' and Carers' Network has put together a list of resources to support those with caring responsibilities.
If you have caring responsibilities, please discuss this, in confidence, with your line manager, your college or department to help identify available support if required.
We are committed to trans equality and inclusion, as members of the Stonewall Global Diversity Champions programme and the Athena SWAN Charter. We have developed a policy and guidance for staff and students to recognise and support everyone's gender identity and expression and to ensure an inclusive, trans-friendly workplace, learning environment and culture, where everyone can thrive and fulfil their potential free from discrimination, bullying, harassment or victimisation.
Our trans work has been developed with Lancaster University Students' Union, our LGBT Staff Network and colleagues across the University and with support from external experts at Stonewall and Lancashire LGBT. The Guidance introduces a system of Key Contacts that you can turn to for advice if you are a trans student or member of staff.
If you are a student, for queries on change of names requests you can also refer to the Student Records team in the Student Registry, by sending an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are a member of staff, you can contact your line manager or require the support of your People and OE Advisor.
Gender Neutral facilities
Our Facilities team has put together a list of gender-neutral facilities with the help of Lancaster University Women+ Forum and LGBTQ+ Staff Network, and added them to Maze Maps. You can find over 220 facilities across the Bailrigg campus.
- Widening Participation and Social Mobility
Where to go for further support
Further information and support is available here:
- EDI-related Networks: We have several EDI–related networks and associations at Lancaster University for staff and students. For further details, visit our EDI Engagement @ Lancaster University page.
- EDI Team: The EDI Team runs an MS Teams EDI Stakeholders Team to keep in touch with colleagues who are interested in EDI discussions and good practice. The Teams page is open to all staff to join. You can also contact the EDI Team by email with any general queries about EDI.
- Staff Wellbeing: All staff are able to access a range of professional support through the Employee Assistance Programme and has selected the Five Ways to Mental Wellbeing framework, as a basis to provide information and activities to help improve the mental health and wellbeing of our staff.
- Support for Staff (internal only)
- Support for Students
LUREN (Lancaster University Race Equality Network) has developed an Anti-Racist Learning and Teaching Toolkit, a practical document to help colleagues understand racism both in general and as it relates to their area of research and teaching. For more information please see the Anti-Racist Toolkit.
Lancaster Allies Networks
Lancaster University is committed to create an environment and culture where all students, staff and visitors feel safe, welcome and supported for who they are.
We hope to create Ally Networks that can support diversity and inclusion at Lancaster. Thanks to the initiative of our LGBT Staff Network, we started by launching ‘Safe Home Base’, the LGBTQIA+ Ally Network.
To join the LGBTQIA+ Allies Network, please email email@example.com and we will add you to our mailing list and Team.
Have you heard about Abintegro?
If you have, you may think that it’s the Careers online learning portal for students. But did you know that staff can access it too and it offers much more than careers support and guidance?
As well as career guidance the portal also hosts a raft of professional development guides, short videos and questionnaires that cover a range of Business Skills topics with everything from presentation skills, to change management, time management and communication.
There are also a fantastic range of e-learning modules around Equality and Diversity to explore, for example:
- Unconscious bias
- Disability Confident explained
- The importance of fostering inclusion
There are also courses around communication and working relationships and a large number of written resources around inclusion and diversity.
Please take time to have a look through the courses on offer and for more information please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
RT @RathVivian: We will host our @tcddublin Forum for Disabled Staff & Postgrad Students Disabili-Tea on Fri,8th,11am.We will be joined by members of @LancasterEqual Staff Disability Grp & we will mark Disability Pride month.@mccartpm @DrSaraKiftOT @jess_mannion #DisabilityPrideMonth @DeptofFHed https://t.co/kLsxwUuUM6
We have a 6-month vacancy for a Kickstart Engagement Communication and Marketing Internship based within the EDI and Organisational Development team at Lancaster University, to support a variety of activities across the University. Details here: https://t.co/h7IWiQtoHY