Bullying, harassment and discrimination

The University of Auckland is committed to being safe, inclusive and equitable for all our staff and students. Harassment can threaten your sense of personal security or make you feel uneasy. It is not acceptable and is not tolerated.

If you witness or experience behaviour that appears dangerous or makes you feel in unsafe, call the Police on 111.

The University has resources to support staff and students who experience, witness or are concerned about harassment.

Phone numbers for help are below with links to more information.

What is harassment?

Harassment is unwelcome conduct that is offensive, humiliating or intimidating to any other person and is either repeated, or of such significant nature that it has a detrimental effect on the person, their performance or their work and study environment. Harassment can be:

It can also be based on your

  • Sexual orientation and gender identity 
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Physical characteristics or mental ability

What does harassment look like or sound like?

Harassment can take many forms. It can be:

  • Verbal (e.g., name calling; offensive comments or ‘jokes’)
  • Non-verbal (e.g., offensive material left for you to find; texts and emails)
  • Physical (e.g., gestures; intimidating and aggressive behaviour).

You may know the person who is harassing you, or the harassment may be anonymous via phone calls, texts or emails, and from outside the University.

Regardless of its focus or how it is delivered, harassment at the University is never acceptable.

What can I do if I witness or experience harassment?

If you witness or experience behaviour that appears dangerous or makes you feel in unsafe, call the Police on 111.

Staff training - addressing bullying, harassment and discrimination - or blow the whistle

  • Staff are encouraged to do an online training module, "Addressing bullying, harassment and discrimination", available on Career Tools on the intranet, then follow up by booking a workshop, also available on Career Tools.
  • Staff are also encouraged to do online training on unsconscious bias and follow up with a workshop. Book training on Career Tools. Read about unconscious bias and do a test
  • Report harassment to your academic head, line manager or HR representative or through one of the options outlined on the Staff Complaint Process flowchart
  • If you are not sure who to contact or wish to discuss a threat from an external or anonymous source, call the Staff Service Centre (SSC) on ext 86000 or 09 923 6000. You will be directed to specially trained staff who will support you and ensure appropriate, confidential follow-up actions are taken to help keep you safe.
  • You can use the University’s anonymous reporting service, which offers an online reporting option. A report will be sent to the University and you will be informed of options for further action.
  • Staff can access the free and confidential Employee Assistance Programme (EAP), for personal support and counselling.

Addressing bullying, harassment and discrimination - student training on Canvas

  • In 2019, online training modules were launched to help build general knowledge around what constitutes bullying, harassment and discrimination, as well as give options for support, advice and action.
  • All new students in 2020 have been directly enrolled in online training and will receive an email from Canvas to confirm their acceptance. For any other students wishing to complete the training please email Wellbeing@auckland.ac.nz to request access.
  • Depending on who has been harassing you, students can report the incident to one of the options on the Student Complaint Process flowchart.
  • The University Proctors (Professor Gillian Lewis and Michael Rengers are your contacts for non-academic misconduct, including harassment) 09 293 7005 or 027 839 3832.
  • AUSA Advocacy (a free and confidential advocacy service, independent from the University) 09 309 0789.
  • You can use the University’s anonymous reporting service, which offers an online reporting option. A report will be sent to the University and you will be informed of options for further action.
  • More info on personal support options for students, including the Student Health and Counselling Service.

The University joins the Shielded Site Project

It is vital that people can ask for help safely and effectively.

To complement the University of Auckland’s “Family Violence, It’s not OK” initiative, we have added "The Shielded Site Project".

This means victims of domestic violence can access a shielded portal where they can contact The Womens Refuge - to find out how to make an exit plan, learn how to stay safe online and get answers about what comes next. Crucially, none of the information searched will show up on their browser history for their abuser to find.

The portal can be found on the University of Auckland homepage.

 

What is gender-based harassment?

Gender based harassment describes a wide range of behaviour based on gender stereotypes, sexual orientation or gender identity. Such behaviour includes verbal, physical, visual or online actions which demean, belittle or threaten a person. It does not necessarily suggest sexual interest or intent; it is often about making a person feel unwelcome, uncomfortable, inferior or vulnerable...read more