Introducing ACU's Safety Support Network

ACU has launched a Safety Support Network to support students who have experienced or witnessed sexual misconduct or domestic and family violence.

The network comprises 34 staff members across seven campuses who have received specialised training and will work closely with our Safeguarding and Student Safety Team to support students.

Staff members who receive disclosures from students are also invited to contact members of the Safety Support Network for advice.

What is a Safety Support Officer?

Safety Support Officers act as a central point of contact for any member of ACU who seeks support, information, advice or a response to any form of concerning or inappropriate behaviour affecting a student or students, whether on or off campus.

ACU’s Safety Support Network includes a mix of academic and professional staff from across the university, to ensure there are a range of avenues for students to access support.

Safety Support Officers will:

  • respond with empathy, compassion, understanding, and without judgement.
  • guide students towards internal and external support services
  • provide students with information about reporting options and assist them through the process
  • work through what support the student needs to continue with study, regardless of whether the alleged perpetrator is associated with ACU or not.
  • assist and support staff members who receive a disclosure from a student
  • work closely with our Safeguarding and Student Safety Team to further support students through disclosures.
What is the aim of the Student Support Network?

The Safety Support Network has been formed in response to the results of the 2021 National Student Safety Survey. The results indicated that our students lack knowledge about how ACU responds to sexual misconduct, the support services we provide, and how to make a report.

By offering this service we aim to provide students with better access to and visibility of ACU’s reporting options and increase confidence and trust in ACU’s approach to sexual misconduct prevention and response.

Since the network was established, we are already seeing more discussion, requests for training and staff seeking advice on how to best support students who disclose.

How to find a Safety Support Officer

Safety Support Officers can be identified through their Safety Support Network pin and will also display the Safety Support Network email signature.

To locate your local Safety Support Officer and read their profile please visit the ACU website.

More information

For more information about the Safety Support Network please contact National Manager, Safeguarding and Student Safety Kellie Maxwell.

Please note that Safety Support Officers do not deal with complaints or reports from staff about other staff members. In these circumstances, please contact HR.

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