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Report and Support - annual report 2020-21

Studying at University should be a special time. And we know from student surveys that most students at Warwick enjoy a hugely positive experience here – and find a community which is warm, welcoming and supportive.

It should be a given that everyone feels safe and valued at Warwick. But sadly, that’s not the case for everyone. We would be naive to think discrimination, bullying, harassment and sexual misconduct do not happen here – because they do, just like they do in wider society.

We can’t ignore or hide away from some of the uncomfortable aspects of life, which is why we believe it’s important to be open, honest and transparent with our community so we can address these issues together.

We are committed to doing all we can to stamp out any form of unacceptable behaviour. That’s why we are sharing the findings of our first annual report for our online disclosure platform Report and Support, which is where members of our community report concerns to us on issues such as sexual misconduct, harassment and discrimination so that they can get the help they need.

We are one of the first universities in the country to take this step and we’re committed to sharing these findings with you every year.

The report shows a sharp increase in the number of disclosures compared to the previous year. This is a concern, but it’s important to understand the context to them.

We extended the Report and Support service last year to include a range of other complaints, including harassment, bullying, discrimination and staff disclosures – meaning there is a wider range of issues that people can report.

We have been working to raise awareness of the service and build confidence in it within our community. We believe the fact more people are using the service and reporting disclosures shows that there is increased awareness of Report and Support and that it is a service that is trusted. This is something we must now work hard to maintain.

We want more people who need support to use our service so we can offer them the help they need. Behind every number in this report is a distressing or traumatic personal experience.

Over the last two years, we have made significant progress in improving support services, preventative training and disciplinary processes – but we know there’s always more we can do.

This report sets out a number of actions and initiatives which we will use to continue to break down barriers to disclosure and to increase confidence in our service.

And we will keep listening to our students and staff – and welcome dialogue with you around your experiences and what more we can do.

Ultimately, this is an issue we can only tackle effectively together as a community and we’re grateful for your support in doing this.

Stuart Croft