Sexual misconduct

Sexual misconduct is any kind of unwanted sexual activity, which does not always include physical contact.

Sexual misconduct can happen to anyone. It covers a broad range of inappropriate and unwanted behaviours of a sexual nature. It covers all forms of sexual violence, sexual assault and sexual harassment. 

Urgent help

If you feel at immediate risk or need emergency help, contact an emergency service

If you have experienced sexual misconduct within the last 7 days, we strongly encourage you to seek support without delay as there is a timeframe within which evidence can be gathered. Your local sexual assault referral centre offers 24/7 support and you can also call Wellbeing Access on +44 (0)117 456 9860 for information about urgent support.

I want support and advice

Request wellbeing support

When you request support, our Wellbeing Advisers will offer you advice and refer you to the right service. This may include our Sexual Violence Liaison Officers (SVLO) team.

Our team of male and female SVLOs have had specialist training to support and advise students who have experienced any form of sexual violence.

This service is available to all students, regardless of when or where the incident took place.

Your SVLO will be led by you. They will listen to you and discuss the options available to you. They will:

  • help you decide what support you need going forward
  • help you access that support
  • provide you with information about possible next steps.

Some of the options may include:

  • referral to specialist external support agencies
  • referral to support within the university
  • practical support, including accommodation options
  • advice on possible reporting options, including to the police or the university.

There are also resources and external services available

I want to make a report

Make a formal report

Formally report an incident of sexual misconduct to the University. A member of the Student Resolution Service (SRS) will contact you to help progress your report. You will be assigned a Student Liaison Officer who will be your main point of contact. They will make sure you understand the process and keep you updated.

Allegations of sexual misconduct form (Office document, 48kB)

Report anonymously

We will not be able to contact you or act on this information, but it will be used to better understand the issues impacting our university community, and to shape our prevention and response to unacceptable behaviour.

Make an anonymous report

I am unsure whether I want to make a report

If you're not sure if you want to make a report, speak to a member of the SRS team: You can discuss your options and make an informed decision on whether you wish to make a report.

Definitions of sexual misconduct

Sexual violence

Any kind of unwanted behaviour of a sexual nature. You don’t have to have previously objected to someone's behaviour for it to be considered unwanted.

It is intended to or has the effect of: 

  • violating your dignity 
  • making you feel intimidated, degraded or humiliated 
  • creating a hostile or offensive environment.  

It does not always include physical contact. Examples of sexual violence include: 

  • revenge porn 
  • sending emails with a sexual content 
  • making unwanted sexual comments or jokes 
  • physical behaviour including unwanted sexual advances or touching 
  • sexual abuse 
  • rape. 

Sexual assault

Any sexual touching that a person does not consent to. It involves all unwanted sexual contact including kissing, groping, rape and enforced sexual acts. 

It does not matter if you have previously consented to sexual acts with that person, or with others. Whatever the circumstances, nobody has the right to force you to have sex or touch you without your consent. If this happens to you, it’s not your fault. 

Sexual harassment

Unwanted sexual actions or behaviour by individuals or groups which violates a person’s dignity and creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment. Sexual harassment can be a single incident, or a string of persistent behaviour. You don't need to have objected to a certain kind of behaviour in the past for it to be unwanted and constitute harassment. 

Support and advice

Watch our short animation sharing advice and support for victims of sexual violence or harassment, before or during University. 

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