The School has a network of trained Dignity Advisors who provide a confidential information service to staff and students on issues relating to bullying, harassment, sexual harassment and discrimination.
SOAS seeks to eliminate discrimination, harassment and victimisation. Such behaviours are never acceptable whether carried out by students, staff or visitors to the premises. SOAS is committed to maintaining a professional working, and learning environment that is free from any form of bullying & harassment. The Dignity Advisors play a vital role in promoting this.
All Dignity Advisors are volunteers who work in a variety of roles across campus and carry out this task in addition to their day jobs. Dignity Advisors receive one full day of additional training on the University’s Dignity@SOAS Policy and take part in a number of continuing professional development sessions each year, including training on responding to reports of sexual harassment and sexual violence. They have in-depth-knowledge of the policy and procedures and what support is available to both staff and students. The Equality and Diversity Office manage this Network and are available to support Advisors where necessary.
If you feel you or someone you know is experiencing or has experienced bullying, harassment, sexual harassment or discrimination, you can contact an advisor through the Equality and Diversity Office. Dignity Advisors are also available to any member of staff or student who has been accused of bullying, harassment, sexual harassment or discrimination.
Dignity Advisors can:
- Provide a confidential support, advice and information service to University staff and students on issues relating to harassment and equality.
- Assist individuals to identify the problems they face and explore the various options available to them, which can include making a complaint under the Dignity@SOAS Policy.
- Identify to individuals any other support services available and appropriate to their circumstances.
- Deal with all cases with the utmost confidentiality except in cases where there is an unacceptable risk to a member of staff, student or to the institution.
- Participate in meetings to share good practice, raise issues and provide mutual support.
Dignity Advisors cannot:
- Provide counselling.
- Take responsibility for solving the problem.
- Act as an advocate for the complainant or approach the accused on the individual’s behalf.
- Replace the role of a trade union representative.