Harassment and bullying
We believe that every member of staff has the right to work in a supportive environment, free from harassment, bullying, and discrimination. Similarly, every student at the University has the right to study and be taught in an environment that is supportive and free from such behaviours.
The University has a Harassment and Bullying Procedure (PDF) to incorporate clear guidance for staff, students and visitors.
Our values of Integrity, Inclusion, Inspiration, and Innovation are integral to all that we do. We want Surrey to be a place where everyone feels welcomed, valued and safe.
The University of Surrey will not tolerate harassment and bullying of any kind. This means that every report of harassment and bullying will be treated seriously with proportionate investigation and action. The procedure applies to conduct on our campuses, off campus and online.
Harassment is any unwanted physical, verbal or non-verbal conduct that has the purpose or effect of violating a person's dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for them. A single incident can amount to harassment.
Harassment is unlawful under the Equality Act 2010 if it relates to the protected characteristics of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation, or if it is conduct of a sexual nature (Sexual Harassment). The University considers all Harassment to be unacceptable, whether or not it relates to a relevant protected characteristic (for example, Harassment related to weight and body size, or social class). Find out more about hate crime.
Bullying is offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour, often involving the misuse of power that can make a person feel vulnerable, upset, humiliated, undermined or threatened. Power does not always mean being in a position of authority. It can include both personal strength and the power to coerce through fear or intimidation.
The behaviours listed here are also covered by the Harassment and Bullying Procedure:
- Sexual harassment and sexual misconduct
- Controlling behaviour
- Coercive behaviour
There are many different options available to Surrey staff and students if bullying or harassment is experienced:
- Line managers
- Report + Support*
- HR Advisory team or Local HR Business Partner
- Support roles eg Centre of Wellbeing, OSCAR, trade unions, Centre of Religious Life and Belief (Chaplaincy)
- Security Services
*Available for use 24/7, report + support provides clear information about your options and signposting to appropriate support services. Anonymous reporting is available, and all submissions are treated seriously and impartially. Reports will be responded to within three working days. Please note that the Report + Support service is also available to visitors and third parties.