If you feel that you have experienced bullying or harassment, there are several services available to provide support and guidance. 

We've listed a few options below, so you can make a choice that is right for you. For a full list of support resources including wellbeing support see the general support page.

Talking Through Your Options  

It can be helpful to speak to a Harassment Advisor about your situation in the first instance. 

A conversation with a Harassment Advisor is just that, it is not the start of a formal process but an opportunity for you to voice your concerns in a supportive and non-judgemental space and decide what you would like to do.    

A Harassment Advisor will: 
  • Deal with your case confidentially, unless you or someone else is considered at risk of serious harm. Wherever possible, they would normally discuss this with you first. 
  • Listen. 
  • Outline the University or relevant college Harassment Policy and Procedures.
  • Clarify the options open to you for resolving the matter informally (where appropriate) or making a formal complaint. 
  • Signpost you on to other teams or support services where appropriate.
You can contact a Harassment Advisor by completing a named report through the Report + Support. A Harassment Advisor will contact you to organise a time to meet to discuss your situation. 

Alternatively, you can email us at harassment.line@admin.ox.ac.uk or visit the EDU website here to find a Harassment Advisor. 

Further support for staff at the University: 

Employee Assistance Programme

You can use the Employee Assistance Programme. The Employee Assistance Programme is a confidential employee service designed to help you deal with your personal and professional problems that could be affecting your home life or work life, health and general wellbeing. 

They can provide advice on how to deal with bullying and harassment in work.  They can also provide access to a range of wellbeing support including counselling. 

Your Line Manager or HR

It may help to talk to your line manager if you are finding the situation is having an impact on your work and emotional wellbeing.  

If you are not comfortable speaking to your line manager, you can speak to your HR Officer (including on a no-names basis) who can talk through what support is available and the options available to you. HR will be able to discuss these issues with you sensitively and without involving your manager initially. In many cases, however, your manager may need to become involved at a later stage,as this is often necessary to investigate or address issues that are raised. 

Trade Union Representation

If you are a member of a Trade Union, you may wish to approach them for support and advice. Information about Trade Union representation is available here.  

External organisations

There are many other organisations that can provide support and guidance for people experiencing bullying and harassment including sexual assault/harassment. 

The Acas helpline is for anyone who needs advice about employment law or workplace advice, including employers, employees,  and workers.

Contact us for confidential, free advice here:

Telephone: 0300 123 1100
Textphone: 18001 0300 123 1100
Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm

Acas also provides information about dealing with sexual harassment at work. It includes a list of specialist helplines and support. https://www.acas.org.uk/sexual-harassment/get-help-and-support

Citizen’s Advice Bureau 

The Citizen’s Advice Bureau provide free, confidential advice on a range of matters such as harassment in the workplace and hate crime to give people the knowledge and the confidence they need to find their way forward. 

Oxford Sexual Abuse and Race Crisis Centre offers support and advice to anyone who has experience any form of sexual misconduct.  You can get free support by contacting the 24/7 support line run by Rape Crisis England and Wales, which operates via phone on 0808 500 2222 and online chat via https://247sexualabusesupport.org.uk

SurvivorsUK (for male survivors)
SurvivorsUK provides a national online helpline - a webchat and sms service for men and non-binary people who have experienced sexual violence at any time in their lives. 

The National Bullying Helpline is a confidential helpline designed to advise about bullying and employment law. They are open from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday. Freephone: 0300 323 0169. Telephone: 0845 225 5787. Their website also hold lots of advice, information and guidance. 

Act Against Bullying is a leading charity advising on childhood bullying and abuse including sexual bullying and cyberbullying. Advice is available on their website.

The Cyber Helpline: free, expert help for victims of cybercrime and online harm

National Stalking Helpline
The Suzy Lamplugh Trust aims to create a safer society by the risk and prevalence of abuse, aggression, and violence - with a specific focus on stalking and harassment.  - through education, campaigning, and support. You can contact the National Stalking Helpline here -  https://www.suzylamplugh.org/what-happens-when-i-contact-the-helpline

How can I make a formal complaint?

Here is a helpful flowchart to help you consider your options when it comes to formally reporting an incident of bullying and Harassment:

University Procedure

If you choose to make a formal complaint to the University about a student or member of staff, there are procedures which set out the steps you'll need to follow. Your options will depend on the context of what has happened to you. To make a formal complaint download and fill out the following form.

If you wish to make formal complaint about a member of staff, you should submit a written complaint to your Head of Department (or the equivalent) setting out the nature of the behaviour, the effect on them and the resolution they are seeking. The Head of Department will usually inform the reported person, meet with both (or all) parties involved and other relevant people confidentially to obtain further relevant information and decide how to proceed.

Informal and formal options are available to help resolve issues.

If you wish to make a complaint against a colleague, we recommend you talk to your Line Manager in the first instance, or local HR Officer or Manager, to discuss your concerns. They will be able to talk through what support is available and the options available to you. 
Incidents of bullying and harassment that occur within the college environment will normally be dealt with under the appropriate college procedures.

The Police 

Report to the Police: if the behaviour is of a criminal nature, you can contact the Police directly by phoning 999 in an emergency or for non-emergencies telephoning 101 or submitting a report online - www.thamesvalley.police.uk

If you are experiencing threatening behaviour or worried about your safety you can contact the police. In an emergency, always dial 999. For non-emergencies you make contact online via the Thames Valley Police website or by calling 101. Please see the current Thames Valley Police guidance for more information.  

If you don’t feel comfortable contacting the police, you can report incidents or crimes in confidence, as well as seek support, through Victims First Hub, an independent charity supporting people affected by crime, here.

Please also see the hate crime page for details about reporting incidents of Hate Crime. 

For a full list of resources of support for staff please see the EDU website advice page or the General Support page here on the Report and Support tool.

There are two ways you can tell us what happened