If you think someone you know is being bullied or harassed there are lots of ways in which you can help them.
Bullying and harassment are contrary to the Equality Act 2010 and the University Diversity and Dignity at Work and Study policy. Understanding the behaviours associated with bullying and harassment is a good place to start. Most people will be able to describe what has or is happening to them and how it's making them feel.  

Bullying is offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour involving the misuse of power that can make a person feel vulnerable, upset, humiliated undermined or threatened. Harassment is when someone intentionally or unintentionally violates a person’s dignity or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment, which interferes with an individual’s learning, working or social environment. 

Harassment may involve sexual harassment or be related to a protected characteristic such as age, disability, gender reassignment, pregnancy or maternity, race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation. Find out more about sexual harassment.

Some forms of harassment are considered a Hate Crime. A hate incident or crime is any act of violence or hostility against a person or property that is motivated by hostility or prejudice towards a person due to a particular protected characteristic. Find out more on hate crime.

  • Are they in immediate danger? If they are in immediate danger or seriously injured, you can call 999 (or 112 from a mobile). If you're deaf or hard of hearing, use our text-phone service 18000 or text us on 999 if you’ve pre-registered with the emergency SMS service
  • Find a safe space. If an incident has just happened, try and find somewhere you feel safe. If you feel unsafe and are on campus, please call Security, who will liaise with emergency on +44(0)2079115000 or extension 5555, or alternatively dial 112 from your mobile in an emergency. 
SHUSH - active listening tips

1. Show you care - focus on the other person, make eye contact, put away your phone. To really listen to somebody, you need to give them your full attention, maintain eye contact and be engaged. When starting the conversation resolve not to talk about yourself at all. 

2. Have patience - It may take time and several attempts before a person is ready to open up. Effective listening is about creating trust with the other person. The person sharing shouldn’t feel rushed, or they won’t feel it’s a safe environment. If they've paused in their response, wait, they may not have finished speaking. It might take them some time to formulate what they are saying, or they may find it difficult to articulate what they're feeling. Through non-judgemental listening, you are allowing the person to relax into the conversation and to use it as a place to reflect or work through difficult emotions. 

3. Use open questions -  Use open questions that need more than a yes/no answer, and follow up with questions like 'Tell me more'. An open-ended question means not jumping in with your own ideas about how the other person may be feeling. These questions don't impose a view point and require a person to pause, think and reflect, and then hopefully expand. Avoid asking questions or saying something that closes down the conversation. Open-ended questions encourage them to talk, the conversation is a safe space that you are holding for them and nothing they say is right or wrong. Try asking, 'how are you feeling today'? 

4. Say it back - Check you’ve understood, but don’t interrupt or offer a solution. Repeating something back to somebody is a really good way to reassure them that they have your undivided attention. And you can check to see that you’re hearing what they want you to hear, not putting your own interpretation onto the conversation. 

5. Have courage - Don’t be put off by a negative response and, most importantly, don’t feel you have to fill a silence. Sometimes it can feel intrusive and counter-intuitive to ask someone how they feel. You’ll soon be able to tell if someone is uncomfortable and doesn’t want to engage with you at that level. You'll be surprised at how willing people are to listen and how, sometimes, it is exactly what somebody needs to be able to share what is going on their mind.

*Based on the Samaritans guidelines for active listening 
  • Give options. When they have finished talking ask them if they are okay to talk through some possible options and next steps:  
  • Request to Speak to an adviser on Report + Support. An advisor can talk through the University's procedures, inform you on how to make a complaint and let you know what support is available, in confidence.
They may also wish to report the incident through the options below: 

  • Report and Support. Students can report an incident using the University’s Report and Support system. You can choose to do this anonymously or you can request support from an advisor. If you choose to talk to an advisor they will be able to talk through the options and support available to you, in confidence. 
  • Reporting to the police. If you’re thinking of reporting sexual misconduct to the police, Rape Crisis have produced a useful list of things to think about.  
  • Report the incident anonymously. You can call crime stoppers at any point on 0800 555 111 or report the incident using this form
  • If on public transport in London. You can report the incident to TFL. 
University Guidance 
  • Please read the attached guidance on reporting the conduct of a student 
Support at the University 
  • Request to Speak to an adviser on Report + Support. An advisor can talk through the University's procedures, inform you on how to make a complaint and let you know what support is available, in confidence. 
  • Residential Life. If you are a student in University Halls, all of the residences have Residential Assistants living in-house, who are senior students specially selected and trained for these roles. They are available weekday evenings and weekends if you wish to talk things through.  
  • Your Personal Tutor can support you with your studies and can put you in touch with services that can further support you. 
  • Counselling Service. The University’s team of professional counsellors, psychotherapists and mental health workers offers confidential support. 
  • The Disability Advisory Support Service. The University’s dedicated disability advisors can provide advice, guidance, and support to students about a range of practical adjustments to your work or studies. 
  • Mitigating Circumstances.If you feel your studies have been affected by what has happened, you can consider applying for mitigating circumstances.   
Additional Support 
  • Family Lives provides some information and advice on bullying at Universities 
  • Citizens Advice provides some information on bullying and harassment 
  • The Student’s Union Advice Service can help you understand the University procedures and think about how you wish to respond to your situation 
  • Young Minds has put together a blog on how to deal with bullying at University 
  • LGBT Foundation has a number of groups covering a wide section of the LGBT community. They provide a safe and comfortable environment for people who may feel isolated, are coming out or are new to the area. 
Mental Health and Wellbeing 

There are two ways you can tell us what happened