Important note on terminology

We understand that talking about what has happened may be difficult, and the terminology and language used can sometimes be confusing. Here are some clarifications:
  • 'Report' - refers to a report made via Report and Support, or a report you may choose to make to the Police
  • 'Complaint' - refers to a complaint made against a Newcastle University Student or Colleague to our Student Progress team. The Student Progress Team manage the Student Disciplinary Procedures - for more information click here
  • Our survivor support team sits within Student Health and Wellbeing Services. This team will help you understand your options for support, as well as information about the Police reporting process (should you choose to report to the Police). Please note that our support service is separate to the University complaints process. Using Report and Support does not automatically trigger a complaint to the Student Progress Team.
1. How quickly will you respond to my report?

We aim to respond to all reports within 2 working days (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm, excluding Bank Holidays and University closure dates). 

We are not a crisis service – but crisis help is freely available for you.  

If you are in immediate danger you should contact the Police, dial 999. If you are safe but would like to speak to the Police or access national crisis support you should dial 101 for local Police, or 111 to speak to the National Health Service who can refer you to the relevant service. 

If you have experienced sexual assault within the last seven days, specialist, free, confidential support is available from your local Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC). The SARC can support you with decisions related to counselling support, collection of forensic evidence (regardless of whether you wish to report to the Police). The SARC in Newcastle is managed by an organisation called R.E.A.C.H. You can contact them 24/7 on 0333 344 8283. 


2. What questions will you ask?

We ask for your name, contact details, and some general questions about what has happened. You can provide as little or as much as you like. As long as you have provided your contact details, a member of our team will proactively contact you within 2 working days, so there is always the opportunity to tell us more and receive further support.  


3. What happens to my report?

Your report is stored securely in our Report and Support system and a member of our support team will review your report to get an understanding of your support needs. We will then contact you to explore with you what support you would like. We can also help you to consider if you would like to make a complaint to the University, or a report to the Police. 

We also anonymise ‘Speak to an advisor’ reports by removing all identifying information and collate these with anonymous reports. We then use this anonymous, non-identifiable data to shape support and prevention activities. 

4. Who will you tell about my report?

Your report will be held confidentially in Student Health and Wellbeing Services. This means that we will not refer your report, or trigger any complaint processes with the University or reports to other organisations such as the Police without your direct consent. We aim to put you in control of your support plan, and we will support you to make informed choices.

The only time we may need to share your report or information is if we believe you or others are at immediate and serious risk, or you are engaged in criminal activity that puts others at risk. Our priority will always be your safety and support, and anything you share with Student Health and Wellbeing Services is confidential, unless we think safeguarding action is required. If you would like to discuss this in more detail, please email reportandsupport@ncl.ac.uk to speak to a member of our team. 
 
Sometimes we will ask you if you consent to being referred to an external service such as Rape Crisis or Victim Support. Our team will ensure that your support is tailored to your individual needs so that you get the best possible support. Where we do suggest referral to an external organisation the decision to go ahead with this remains with you as the survivor, and you will not be pressured into seeking external support.

5. Do I have to report to the Police or make an complaint to the University to get support?

No. You do not have to report to the Police or make a complaint to the University to use Report and Support Service, or to receive support from our teams. We are survivor-led, which means that you will be given the support and information you need to make a knowledgeable decision about your own care and support. We will support your decisions. 

For students, anything you share with Student Health and Wellbeing Services is confidential, unless they think safeguarding action is required. We will always endeavour to act in your best interests in these cases, and wherever possible we would work in collaboration with you.

6. The incident I want to report or seek help for happened off campus, can I still use Report and Support?

Yes. Where an incident took place does not matter - we will support you. It may have been on campus, off campus, in the street, online, during a year abroad, or at a society or club event. Wherever it happened we can support you, and you can access our service.

If an incident occurred during a NUSU club or society event, game, or social, and you wish to complain we will support you to direct your complaint to NUSU. You will still be able to access support from the service, but your complaint will be managed by NUSU.
 
If an incident occurred during your year abroad you may have lots of questions about what you should do. Our hate crime and sexual violence prevention team will offer emotional support and guidance, and signpost you to appropriate support both from the University and from your host University, workplace, placement, or in your local community.  The support we offer will be bespoke to your needs, and we will support you to make informed choices about your support and reporting options.
 
 
7. What if an incident happened when I was breaking Covid-19 regulations?

It does not matter. Your support is our priority. We never want you to feel that you cannot speak up about your experiences or any concerns you might have for others. You will not be disciplined for Covid-19 regulation breaches that occurred during an incident, and we will not report these to the Police. 

For students, anything you share with Student Health and Wellbeing Services is confidential, unless they think safeguarding action is required. We will always endeavour to act in your best interests in these cases, and wherever possible we would work in collaboration with you.  So if an incident occurred when you we’re in breach of the law, or university policy, we will still support you in confidence. 

 
8. What if an incident occurred when I was under the influence of drugs?

It does not matter. Your support is our priority. We never want people to feel that they cannot speak up about their experiences or any concerns that they might have for themselves or others. If an incident occurred when you were under the influence of drugs we would seek to safeguard and support you. 

For students, anything you share with Student Health and Wellbeing Services is confidential, unless they think safeguarding action is required. We will always endeavour to act in your best interests in these cases, and wherever possible we would work in collaboration with you. 

Students should refer to our Student Drug Policy: Reducing Harm for further guidance on our approach to drug use. This policy states that “Criminal proceedings if action constitutes a breach of applicable laws and/or University procedures are more likely to be triggered if your behaviour places others at risk”. 

So if an incident occurred when you we’re in breach of the law, or university policy we will still support you in confidence. 


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There are two ways you can tell us what happened