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Sexual Harassment, Assault, Stalking, and Misconduct

If you or someone you know has experienced Sexual Harassment, Assault, Stalking, or any form of Sexual Misconduct, you do not have to cope alone. Support is available at the University and by external support services.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual Harassment comes in many forms and includes a range of inappropriate and unwanted behaviour including, but not limited to;

  • unwanted sexual advances or touching
  • sexually degrading or abusive comments or gestures
  • emails or messages with sexual content
  • sharing sexually explicit materials (such as images, videos or links) in person or in any digital space

Sexual Harassment is unwelcome behaviour which violates a person’s dignity, makes an individual feel intimidated or degraded, or creates an offensive environment. You don’t have to have objected to a certain kind of behaviour in the past for it to be unwanted and constitute harassment.

Sexual Assault

Sexual Assault is any physical, psychological and emotional violation when an individual is forced into sexual activity without giving their consent. This includes, but is not limited to the most severe physical offences, including rape. It can also involve forcing someone to witness sexual activity.

Rape and sexual assault are traumatic experiences which can have long term physical and emotional effects on an individual. Reactions to sexual assault are always different, an individual might feel ashamed, depressed, numb or in shock and have flashbacks.

How an individual behaves, how they dress or how much they drink is never a justification for assault and it is never the survivor's fault.

It can be a difficult decision to come forward and talk about, but if you have been sexually assaulted or experienced sexual harassment you do not have to cope alone.

Internal support

Employee Assistance Programme

If you would like to seek support without making a formal complaint, you may reach out to the University’s free and confidential Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) – available 24/7. This service is available to all St Mary’s employees and their immediate family members.

  • EAP Helpline numbersUK: 0800 358 48 58 (free from a landline) or 0330 332 9980 (uses mobile contract minutes)International: +44 141 271 7179

Mental Health First Aiders

Employees are also encouraged to contact one of St Mary’s trained Mental Health First Aiders for a confidential source of initial support and signposting to appropriate help if required.

These support services are also available for staff members who decide to report an incident to the university.

External Support 

We understand that sometimes people feel more comfortable accessing services which specialise in supporting those from particular communities, cultures, or require certain adjustments in order to support their own personal needs. Our Community Support page provides a wealth of external resources for specific communities and issue-specific expertise.