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#NeverOK campaign launches on Monday

NeverOK

To coincide with Anti-Bullying Week 2018, we are launching a new joint campaign with RUSU, #NeverOK, on Monday 12 November.

The aim is to highlight our values of respect, tolerance and inclusivity for all and follows a Universities UK Taskforce report which examined violence against women, harassment and hate crime affecting university students. A Working Group set up at Reading to review the report’s findings agreed that it would be beneficial to raise awareness of behaviours that contradict our values and are not tolerated on our campuses, as well as increasing awareness of the channels available to report incidents or request help.

‘#NeverOK’ has been used by a number of UK universities in similar campaigns, including Exeter and UEA. At Reading, we will launch with a series of posters across campus, a new student-facing webpage reading.ac.uk/NeverOK, interactive activities with students in RUSU throughout the week, an interview with the Deans for D&I and the RUSU Welfare and Diversity Officers in The Spark, and associated social media.

As part of our #NeverOK campaign we are also running, in a substantial trial with RUSU sports societies, JCR officers, and first-year students in one of our Schools, 20 interactive workshops run for us by the Good Lad Initiative, aimed at promoting positive behaviour in complex group situations, within the campus and socially, and helping people to be active bystanders.

In parallel, we have updated the University’s policy, procedures, and support and reporting routes for bullying and harassment, in particular, providing new support routes for students, through the new team of Welfare Officers. All the updated information is available on our new harassment and bullying webpages.

We hope this will be the start of a dialogue among our community, and there will be further activity throughout the year to raise awareness of specific behaviours. This will include messaging around anti-social behaviour towards the end of the autumn term and content relating to bullying and harassment in the spring term.   

As the campaign evolves over the course of the year we would very much welcome feedback from colleagues – including comments from students and thoughts of your own – to help shape our campaign. Please contact Simon Chandler-Wilde, Dean for Diversity & Inclusion, or Nozomi Tolworthy, RUSU Diversity Officer, with any comments, queries or suggestions. 

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