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Bullying, Harassment and Hate Crime


The University takes all cases of bullying, harassment and hate crime extremely seriously and is committed to fostering an environment in which students can study and live free from victimisation, intimidation or aggression.



Harassment can take many forms – occurring in face-to-face settings, by telephone, or in written or electronic communications.

The following list, by no means exhaustive, provides examples of the types of behaviour that can amount to harassment that may constitute a criminal or civil offence:

  • Unwelcome physical contact – ranging from invading someone’s ‘personal space’ where this is unnecessary, touching or brushing against another person’s body, to physical assault, or coercing sexual intercourse.
  • Unwanted verbal conduct. This may include: making remarks and comments about a student’s or employee’s appearance, lewd comments, sexual advances, innuendo and banter, making or repeating offensive or stereotypical comments, jokes or songs, making threats or patronising comments (such as repeatedly drawing attention to a person’s disability).
  • Intrusive questioning. This may include gossip, as well as questions, about a person’s sexual orientation, their sex life, or their religious beliefs – either directly with the target of the discussion or with others.
  • Unwelcome written or visual communications. This may include unwelcome emails, notes or pictures, displaying or sending pornographic material.
  • The use of cyber social sites such as Facebook, Bebo and Twitter to ridicule, harass or bully 
  •  Non-verbal conduct, such as making abusive or offensive gestures.
  •  The deliberate exclusion of an individual from work-related activities, including social activities related to work, or conversations in which they have a right or legitimate expectation to participate.
  • Other forms of oppressive or intimidating behaviour that are somehow related to a personal characteristic of a student or employee, such as outing someone as gay without their permission 



Bullying is not defined in law. However it shares many characteristics with harassment except that it is not equality-related, nor covers stalking.  The University defines it as: offensive behaviour, which violates a person’s dignity, or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, threatening or offensive environment or which humiliates or undermines an individual or group.  Bullying can be carried out by an individual or a group of people and frequently involves an abuse of authority.

Examples of being bullied include:

  • being shouted at
  • being ‘told off’ in front of colleagues or other people
  • being criticised in an inappropriate manner or belittled about one’s work, personality or personal appearance
  • being persistently ignored or ‘talked down’
  • being pressurised by a group into behaviour/actions against one’s wishes



  • Hate Incident

“A hate incident is any incident, which may or may not constitute a criminal offence, which is perceived by the victim or any other person, as being motivated by prejudice or hate.”

  • Hate Crime

“A hate crime is defined as any Hate incident, which constitutes a criminal offence, perceived by the victim or any other person, as being motivated by prejudice or hate.”

The Home Office defines hate crime as behaviour that is:

  • motivated by prejudice, hatred or intolerance and
  • intentionally damages or demeans an individual or group of people, or
  • damages their property and
  • creates an environment in which people will experience, or could reasonably fear, harassment, intimidation or violence and
  • targets people because of their race, religion or belief, sexuality, gender identity, age, disability or conscience.


An example of a hate crime could be an incident in which a student or visitor pulls a niqab from the face of a female Muslim student. Another example would be the trashing of a student’s flat by homophobic students in the same accommodation block.



If you are experiencing any unwanted behaviour that falls into any of the above categories and you would like to talk to someone in confidence, please email the following email address:

After hours emergency support, 999 or 24hr secuirty at 0161 295 3333.


There are a range of external sources of advice and support for students on issues relating to harassment, bullying and victimisation. For example, these include:

  • The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is a statutory body charged with enforcing anti-discrimination legislation.  You can telephone the helpline on 0808 800 0082 or visit the EHRC’s website at for more information
  • Your local Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) can provide free and impartial advice. You can find your local CAB office in the phone book or online at
  • Gender Trust the largest registered Charity helping adults throughout the UK who are transsexual, gender dysphoric and transgender.  Visit:  Tel: 01527 894838
  • Nightline a confidential, anonymous listening and information service.  Visit:  
  • Samaritans is an organisation which provides confidential non-judgmental emotional support.  Visit:  Tel: 116 123
  • Stonewall a charitable organisation working towards the advancement of the rights of lesbians, gay men and bisexuals.  Visit:  Info line: 08000 502020
  • Women’s Aid a national charity working to end domestic violence against women and children. Visit: Tel: 0800 2000247 (24 hours)
  • Victim Support a national charity giving free and confidential help to victims of crime, witnesses, their family, friends and anyone else effected.  Visit:  Tel: 08081 689111
  • Mind is the leading mental health charity for England and Wales providing information to help promote understanding of mental health Visit: Tel: 0300 123 3393
  • NHS Direct  For health advice and reassurance, 24 hours a day 365 days a year Visit:  Tel: 111