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The RNCM and RNCM Students’ Union are dedicated to providing a safe and comfortable environment for work and study and are proud to promote a zero-tolerance culture regarding sexual harassment.

We believe that all staff and students have the right to work and study, confident in the knowledge that they are fully respected by everyone within our community.

Sexual harassment relates to any form of unwanted and non-consensual behaviour of a sexual nature.

It can include:

  • Sexual comments or jokes
  • Physical behaviour, including unwelcome sexual advances, touching and various forms of sexual assault
  • Displaying pictures, photos or drawings of a sexual nature
  • Sending emails or social media posts with a sexual content

Together, we can stand in solidarity to:

  • Never tolerate, condone or ignore sexual harassment
  • Support staff and students at every stage of the reporting process
  • Actively challenge the culture in which sexual harassment happens through reporting and intervention
  • Contribute towards the creation of a culture that understands and respects the definition of consent

If you would like, you can order a free Zero pin badge or sticker through our Shop

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‘Zero’ is a collaborative campaign between the RNCM and the RNCM Students’ Union, led by the Students’ Union.

The campaign aims to:

  • Educate the RNCM community on the definition of sexual harassment
  • Improve our procedure for reporting instances of bullying and harassment and better signpost this, alongside support services, to the RNCM community
  • Use our zero-tolerance policy to challenge the culture in which sexual harassment exists

So far we've done this by:

  • Creating resources for our staff and students detailing the definition of sexual harassment and ways to look out for both yourself and your mates
  • Introduced a brand-new reporting procedure, designed make it as easy as possible for students to come forward, with a guarantee that they'll be supported every step of the way
  • Rewritten our Bullying and Harassment Policy to better support students (March 2019 launch)
  • Gained support from leading institutions around the city such as University of Manchester Students' Union, MMU Students' Union etc to make Greater Manchester a safer, better place for all
Prof. Linda Merrick RNCM Principal

The safety and welfare of our staff and students is of paramount importance, and we are proud to launch a joint campaign with our Students’ Union that not only promotes our dedication to instilling a zero tolerance culture at the College, but ensures that we play our part in eliminating sexual harassment and bullying within our society.

Nina Pryce RNCM Students' Union Education Officer 18/19

The purpose of this campaign echoes the artistic industry’s current push towards a safer, more equal and positive creative environment. Through uniting the Students’ Union and the College, we can work together to challenge unacceptable behaviour and create a zero-tolerance culture in which staff and students feel safe and empowered.

Kathy Hart RNCM Students' Union President 18/19

I think we’re in a really exciting time at the moment where there’s a lot of positive campaigning around moving towards a zero-tolerance culture and for me this is really just a statement about looking out for each other and working together [as a society] to make sexual harassment a thing of the past. It’s a conversation about everybody - staff and student - which is why it’s so powerful as a joint campaign from both the Students’ Union and the College.

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    We believe that bullying, harassment, sexual harassment and discrimination are never ok.

    You can report incidences of harassment through the College’s reporting procedure, set out below.

    Remember – it’s ok to ask, and you have a right to speak up and raise concerns.

    Any reports of bullying or harassment will be viewed and treated with appropriate weight by the College and both the RNCM and the RNCM Students’ Union aim to create an environment where everyone feels confident to act against any unwanted behaviour.

    If you feel you are able to, have a chat with the person concerned to let them know that their behaviour is causing offence and to request that they stop. You can do this on your own or with support if you like – you can contact anyone in the table below to meet with you and the person concerned.

    You can talk to one of our designated College advisors at any stage of this process:

    ​Jane Gray
    Student Wellbeing Advisor
    jane.gray@rncm.ac.uk

    Dominic Wood
    Environment and Operations Manager
    dominic.wood@rncm.ac.uk

    Cara Houghton
    RNCM Students’ Union President
    cara.houghton@rncm.ac.uk

    Rosie Spinks
    RNCM Students’ Union Welfare Officer
    welfare@student.rncm.ac.uk

    Sarah D’Ardenne
    Head of Library Services
    sarah.dardenne@rncm.ac.uk

    Geoff Thomason
    Deputy Librarian
    geoff.thomason@rncm.ac.uk

    Toni-Ann La-Crette
    Senior Assistant Librarian
    toniann.lacrette@rncm.ac.uk

    ​You can drop in and have an informal chat with any of these advisors or contact them via email. They will treat what you tell them confidentially and will be able to offer advice, discuss your options with you and signpost to further support.

    Contact the Deputy Head of Registry who will set up a meeting between themselves, yourself and the person concerned to try and resolve the problem without formal action. If you don’t feel comfortable meeting with the person concerned, the Deputy Head of Registry can meet with them independently.

    If you don’t feel comfortable speaking with the Deputy Head of Registry, refer to the Bullying and Harassment policy for another staff member you could talk to. If you have been speaking to a college advisor/SU rep from the previous section, you can ask them to set up the meeting on your behalf.

    ​Our Deputy Head of Registry is:

    Adam Croucher
    adam.croucher@rncm.ac.uk
    0161 907 5227

    Contact the Head of Registry who will assist you in submitting a formal written complaint.

    ​Our Head of Registry is:
    Stuart Sephton
    stuart.sephton@rncm.ac.uk
    0161 907 5361

    Moving Forwards

    Victimisation

    You can report incidences of harassment through the College’s reporting procedure, set out below.

    Remember – it’s ok to ask, and you have a right to speak up and raise concerns.

    Any reports of bullying or harassment will be viewed and treated with appropriate weight by the College and both the RNCM and the RNCM Students’ Union aim to create an environment where everyone feels confident to act against any unwanted behaviour.

    Support services

    We understand that no stage of this process is easy, but we have a wide range of support services which provide advice, help and guidance every step of the way. If you have any questions about the reporting process, or would like further information on the support available, please contact our Student Wellbeing Advisor:

    Jane Gray
    jane.gray@rncm.ac.uk
    0161 907 5291

    In an emergency, contact the Police directly on 999. You can call 101 for non-emergencies.

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    If you think that you have experienced bullying or harassment, you should not feel that you have to tolerate it.

    Regardless of where it has taken place, the College has a wide-ranging network able to provide support and advice.

    Student Support In College

    Your Student Wellbeing Advisor

    The RNCM's Student Wellbeing Advisor is Jane Gray. She can be found in the Registry Office and offers an open door drop-in policy from Monday-Friday, 9:30-12:30 and 14:00-16:00.

    jane.gray@rncm.ac.uk
    0161 907 5219

    Your Students' Union (that's us!)

    The RNCM SU can offer free and confidential advice. We're independent from the College and are here to support you. You can get in touch with SU President Cara Houghton or Welfare Officer Rosie Spinks via our contact page or drop into our office - we have an open door policy!

    supresident@rncm.ac.uk
    welfare@student.rncm.ac.uk

    Your College counsellors

    The college has three counsellors, Bryan Fox, Claire Donoghue and Chaden AlSaadi. The counselling service is free and confidential and sessions take place in the College building. You can also arrange to speak to someone outside of the College if you prefer by contacting your Student Wellbeing Advisor, Jane Gray.

    bryan.fox@rncm.ac.uk
    claire.donoghue@rncm.ac.uk
    chaden.alsaadi@rncm.ac.uk
    jane.gray@rncm.ac.uk

    ​Your Mental Health First Aiders

    The College also has four Mental Health First Aiders, who will be able to give guidance and support on a range of issues. Although they’re not a qualified counselling service, they can provide a first response for anyone that is having a bad day by listening to problems, offering support and signposting to any relevant services for further help.

    These are Jane Gray (Student Wellbeing Advisor), John Habron (Head of Music Education), Emily Mason (Programmes Administrator) and Dominic Wood (Environment and Operations Manager)

    jane.gray@rncm.ac.uk
    john.habron@rncm.ac.uk
    emily.mason@rncm.ac.uk
    dominic.wood@rncm.ac.uk

    ​Your new designated Bullying and Harassment Advisors

    You can also get advice specifically on reporting instances of bullying and harassment in College from the following designated people in College:​

    ​Jane Gray
    Student Wellbeing Advisor
    jane.gray@rncm.ac.uk

    Dominic Wood
    Environment and Operations Manager
    dominic.wood@rncm.ac.uk

    Cara Houghton
    RNCM Students’ Union President
    supresident@rncm.ac.uk

    Rosie Spinks
    RNCM Students’ Union Welfare Officer
    welfare@rncm.ac.uk

    Sarah D’Ardenne
    Head of Library Services
    sarah.dardenne@rncm.ac.uk

    Geoff Thomason
    Deputy Librarian
    geoff.thomason@rncm.ac.uk

    Toni-Ann La-Crette
    Senior Assistant Librarian
    toni-ann.lacrette@rncm.ac.uk

    ​You can drop in and have an informal chat with any of these guys or contact them via email. They will treat what you tell them confidentially and will be able to offer advice, discuss your options with you and signpost to further support.

    Supporting Someone Else

    If a friend or somebody close to you tells you that they have been a victim of sexual violence or harassment, it can be a difficult thing to hear. It can be stressful; you might feel that you have to immediately resolve the issue for them, or you may have conflicting views if you know the person who has perpetrated the harassment. But by providing a calm, encouraging space for them to tell their story in their own words, you can really make a difference.

    Here are a few things to keep in mind:

    Allow them to say what they need to say in their own time and at their own pace. Don’t try and be a counsellor and don’t feel like you have to reply – often just listening is enough.

    Tell them it’s not their fault. Nothing they have done or not done has resulted in the experience they have been through.

    Remember not to trivialise or minimise what someone is telling you, even if it’s hard to hear.

    Stay calm, don’t judge or give your opinion. Make sure your friend knows that you fully accept them and will support whatever they need you to do

    Help your friend to make their own choices. Don’t try and push them into making decisions – empower them to be in control of their own decision making

    You can’t expect people to react in any one way. Every individual’s experience, and their response to that experience, is unique to them.

    Let them know that you care. This experience has not changed who they are or how you feel about them.

    ​Remember to take care of yourself too! Here are a few more things to bear in mind:

    You are not a trained counsellor. Your job as a friend is to be supportive and understanding, not to give professional help. If you feel out of your depth, signpost your friend to professional support services or contact them yourself for advice.

    Don’t feel responsible for resolving the issue. Survivors are the experts of their own lives and you should trust them to make the right choices and decisions for themselves

    Take your needs seriously. If you need to, take a supporter’s break and get some support for yourself. Not taking care of yourself can be damaging to you and your friend.

    external advice + support

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    HOW TO BE AN ACTIVE BYSTANDER

    FIVE WAYS TO STAND UP AGAINST SEXUAL HARASSMENT

    Have you heard of bystander intervention? Even if you haven’t, we bet you’ve already done it without thinking…

    Situations where a form of harassment is witnessed or experienced are all too frequent. Maybe we felt powerless to stop that situation, or that it was just the way the world is and we should put up with it. We don't think that's the case.

    Bystander intervention doesn't necessarily mean swooping in to stop harassment whenever you see it - it actually covers a whole range of everyday actions, some as simple as checking in to see if someone's ok. It means humans looking out for other humans to create a safer, more welcoming society.

    Remember to ask yourself before you intervene: is it safe to do jump in? And if so, what's the best way to intervene?

    In an emergency, call the police on 999. Remember, never put yourself in danger - only intervene if it's safe to do so.

    This could be confronting a perpetrator or checking if the person being harassed is ok. Before you jump in, make sure to check out the situation to ensure your personal safety – there are lots of other ways to intervene if your safety would be put at risk. Be polite and don’t aggravate the situation – remain calm and state exactly what it is about the perpetrator’s behaviour that you believe is not ok.

    Start a conversation with the perpetrator to allow their potential target to move away or have friends intervene. You could also come up with an idea to get the victim out of the situation such as telling them they need to take a call, or that someone is asking to see them. Or distracting said perpetrator by shouting ‘Look at that (x) over there!’ which then allows you and the victim to boogie on out of that space.

    Don’t feel like you need to act alone – you can delegate to our Security team or any member of RNCM staff. If you clock harassment when out and about in Manchester, you can alert any member of staff at the establishment you’re in who will be able to help out. Or you could recruit a friendly crowd of other people to have on your side – you can chat strategy and figure out the best way to disrupt possible danger together. See it, say it, sorted

    Check in with the victim of the incident to see if they are ok, and if there’s anything you can do to help them. A simple ‘I’m sorry that happened to you’ can go a long, long way.

    You can also delegate after the event by reporting the incident you witnessed to the establishment where it occurred or reporting it somewhere else.

    Picking up one of our badges? Boom – active bystander. Hear a sexist joke? Not responding instead of laughing along = active bystander. Believing that sexual harassment isn’t ok? You are a GREAT active bystander. Start small and intentional and keep it up – we’re proud of you.