Victoria University is providing specialised training to its security staff to help them provide ‘best-practice’ responses to any sexual assault or harassment incidents or disclosures on campus.
About 40 security staff working across all VU campuses participated in the training. Footscray-based WestCASA (Western Region Centre Against Sexual Assault), a sexual violence counselling service, worked with VU to develop the training content.
VU’s Security management and Student Engagement areas organised the training as part of Victoria University’s dedication to student safety. The work reflects VU's commitment to ensuring that anyone in the VU community affected by sexual violence receives appropriate assistance, and feels acknowledged and supported by the university.
VU Respect and Responsibility Manager Marian Cronin said addressing the issue of sexual assault and sexual harassment is “key to ensuring everyone in the VU community can work, study and live in a safe environment”.
Security staff, as first responders, were taught to identify appropriate action in a range of settings in response to disclosures or incidents of sexual assault or harassment.
Participants also had an opportunity to openly discuss their experiences dealing with these types of incidents. This enabled them to learn about vicarious trauma, and the impact that dealing with sexual violence incidents could have on them personally.
WestCASA provided statistics and data on reported incidents, as well as information packs to all participants to further review and future reference.
This initiative is part of a host of programs, workshops, and community based partnerships to help end sexual assault and sexual harassment on our campuses, and ensure the safety of students and staff. Watch a video conversation between Peter Dawkins, Vice-Chancellor and President of Victoria University, Jill Horman (VUSU President) and Elli Darwinkel (Senior Coordinator Safer Community). Find out more from Victoria University’s Institutional Report on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment.