We will not tolerate sexual assault or harassment at UNE.

Who to contact

In an emergency, phone 000

Then call UNE's Safety and Security on
02 6773 2099

National Support Number (24-hour support):
1800 572 224

Contact UNE


Safety and Security Team:
02 6773 2099
Student Grievance Unit: 

02 6773 4260


Student Grievance Unit:
02 6773 4260
Counselling Service:

02 6773 2897

UNE after-hours student counselling

Call 1300 661 927

Text 0488 868 771

Submit an anonymous report

Latest updates

Update — August 2018

Increasing student support services, improving education and broadening reporting options have been at the centre of the University of New England’s approach to addressing the issue of sexual assault and harassment on campus.

It has been 12 months since the Australian Human Rights Commission’s report into Australian Universities was released and UNE has delivered on all nine recommendations.

There is no greater priority for UNE than the safety and wellbeing of our students, and that is why these have been at the centre of our response to the AHRC report.

UNE plays a leading role in shaping the conversation and changing attitudes and behaviours on campus and in the wider community around the issue of sexual assault and harassment.

Actions taken by the University over the past 12 months include, but are not limited to:

  • Updates to the Residential College Code of Conduct that ensure immediate escalation of matters being referred to the university’s independent investigative unit.
  • Rolling out first responder training for key frontline students and staff to respond to disclosures of sexual violence and assault with compassion and care.  160 staff and students have completed the training to date.
  • Provided online training for all students and staff on consent and responding to disclosures.
  • Implemented the online anonymous reporting function for student and staff to notify the university of sexual assault and harassment.
  • Introduced new student event protocols to reduce the role of alcohol in on-campus activities.
  • Moved the physical location of the counselling services to the residential college precinct to make it easier for students to access and attend sessions.
  • Increased counselling and crisis support services for all students. More counsellors have been employed and all students now have access to an after-hours crisis support line.
  • Provided a free bus service travelling between college and the CBD at night time from Tuesday to Saturday. Students can contact and track the bus via the UNE Security app.
  • Introduced new student event guidelines and monitoring systems to reduce the role of alcohol at student-led events.

Earlier this year the Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins came to UNE and talk to students and staff about an independent review UNE has engaged the Australian Human Rights Commission to undertake into our residential college system.

This expert-led review will examine the factors which contribute to sexual assault and sexual harassment in our college system and we expect this to be completed by the end of the year.

The review findings will further inform our on-going efforts into making the UNE experience a respectful and safe environment for all students and staff.

UNE encourages members of the University community to submit ideas, feedback and questions about our work in the Respect.Now.Always. campaign via the anonymous Q&A function or by emailing respectnowalways@une.edu.au.

Read UNE’s one-year update on the recommendations in the AHRC’s Change the Course Report .

April 2018 update — including the video Change the Course Results and Recommendations with Kate Jenkins.

Human Rights Commission to review UNE Colleges - News story April 4 2018

Useful information

We can help

Campus assistance and support

If you’ve been assaulted, or have experienced threatening or inappropriate behaviour as a member of the UNE community, we can help you.

What happens when you contact someone at UNE for support

You are in control
  • We will listen to what you want and assist you as you wish.
  • We will not take any action unless you want us to — except if there is an immediate threat of danger to you or someone else.
We will put your safety first
  • We will do everything we can to make sure you are safe.
  • Sometimes we will need to take steps to ensure the safety of others as well. We will always try to discuss this with you.
  • We will assist you to get any help you may need and want including medical care, counselling and reporting to the police.

We will listen
  • We will ask what you need, what your immediate circumstances and concern/s are, and listen to what you have to say.
  • Whenever possible, we'll only ask you once to tell us what happened.
We will ask you what you think will help you

In order to help, we need to understand what’s important to you. We will give you as much information as possible so you can decide the best possible action for you, however we will need to know what’s most important so we can give you the right guidance. e.g. 'I want to feel safe when I come to class'.

We will explain and explore options
  • We will tell you what options are available, how they might help and what each path would look like for you. It’s up to you to decide which option is most appropriate for you.
  • Sometimes we will need to take steps to ensure the safety of others. We will always try to discuss this with you.
We will talk to you anonymously

If you do not want to tell us who you are, we can still give you as much information as possible to help you. However we can assist you better if you let us know who you are.

Who else can help

Non-emergency contacts

Armidale Police Station
96 – 98 Faulkner Street Armidale
(02) 6771 0699

Armidale Rural Referral Hospital
226 Rusden St Armidale
(02) 6776 9622 (24 hour Accident & Emergency)

Local Area Health Services

Hunter New England Health
Armidale Rural Referral Hospital
226 Rusden Street Armidale
(02) 6776 9500
(02) 6776 9622 (24 hours Accident and Emergency)

NSW Health Sexual Assault Services
Armidale Community Health Centre
Claire House
Corner Butler and Rusden Street
Armidale, NSW, 2350
(02) 6776 9600 
(02) 6776 9716 (24 hours)

NSW crisis services

24 hour contact numbers

NSW Rape Crisis online counselling

NSW Rape Crisis phone counselling 1800 424 017

Child Protection Helpline 13 21 11

Lifeline 13 11 14

Youthline 02 9951 5522

In a non-emergency situation, you can contact the NSW Police Force Customer Assistance Unit 13 14 44.

Useful contacts

  • Department of Corrective Services Victims Register 02 9289 1374
  • Department of Juvenile Justice Victims Register 02 9219 9400
  • NSW Health Forensic Patients Victims Register 02 9391 9302
  • Criminal Justice Support Network 1300 665 908 — for people with an intellectual disability.
Staying safe

Victims of violence or unwanted behaviour are not at fault.

There are things in place at UNE to help you stay safe, and things to be aware of in social situations.

Campus Safety and Security

If you're on campus in a situation that is making you concerned, phone Campus Safety and Security on 02 6773 2099.

Help phones — Located around campus, help phones provide a free direct line to the Safety and Security team.

They're on call 24/7.

Bus services — on campus and to town

Free shuttle-bus service to your car or home
Available from a specified route around campus and in town, the shuttle-bus service will drop you at your car or back into town. See the shuttle-bus pick-up points and scheduled times.

From 10.00 pm till dawn, the shuttle-bus service runs on the academic campus by request
— phone 02 6773 2099.

Free bus transport to the college residents
College students are encouraged to make use of the following free transport services:

Things to be aware of in social situations

Drink spiking

Drink spiking occurs when alcohol and other drugs are placed in your drink without your knowledge.

The most common drug used for drink spiking is extra alcohol. Young women are more commonly the targets of drink spiking and the harms resulting can include sexual assault, unsafe sex and robbery.

You can reduce the risk of drink spiking by:

  • watching your drinks being poured
  • not leaving your drink unattended
  • not accepting a drink from anyone you don’t know well, or trust.

If you think a friend may have been affected by drink spiking, do not leave them alone. Seek medical attention.

For more information on drink spiking, see Alcohol Think Again.

Make smart decisions

You do not need to drink alcohol or use other drugs to have a good time.

Be aware that mixing alcohol and drugs can put you at greater risk.

Don't mix alcohol with energy drinks — the mix can mask the effect of the alcohol and you may not feel as drunk as you are, and may take more risks.

Be informed about how drugs affect you: see the Alchohol and Drug Foundation's drug facts.

Keep your wits about you, and trust your own judgement or gut instinct. If a situation does not feel right, it probably is not.

Stay close to friends you trust, and look after each other.

If you are faced with a situation that could possibly get violent, walk away.

When entering and exiting a venue or event, take note of conditions of entry e.g. lock out times, excessive queues and pass-outs, as you may not be able to get back in.

Take regular breaks from dancing to prevent overheating.

Seek help immediately if you are worried about yourself or someone else.

Remember, the safest choice is not to get drunk or take recreational drugs!

Get home safely

Never get in a car if the driver has been drinking or taking drugs.

It is safer not to accept a lift from a stranger, including if you have just met them.

If you have driven your own car and end up drinking alcohol and/or taking other drugs, leave your car where it is and find a safe way home with either of the following:

If you get stuck without a lift home, consider calling a sober friend or family member to pick you up. They may be annoyed, but they will be more upset if you do not get home safely.

If your mobile phone is about to go flat, let someone know what time to expect you back.

Always stay with a buddy.

UNE Safe App
UNE Safe app icon

UNE Safe app

Free safety and security app available for iPhone or Android

The app contains a wide range of features, including:

  • Security push notifications informing the UNE Campus users of a critical incident in real time
  • Emergency Contacts
  • Friend Walk – allows you to location share with a friend so they can monitor your whereabouts
  • Report a tip, suspicious package/behaviour etc to Safety, Security & Information via email, phone or SMS
  • Chat with Safety & Security via text
  • UNE Campus Map
  • Emergency Response Plans with links to Emergency Service Information
  • Support resources – direct contact to counselling, student grievance unit, Employee Assistance Program and other Government and NGO sites for support
UNE Culture
Sexual harassment and assault are unacceptable at any level. This is everyone's business and I urge students and staff alike to step up to address this problem. UNE will not tolerate sexual harassment and assault, in any form or in any environment.

- Professor Annabelle Duncan, UNE Vice-Chancellor and CEO.

The University of New England firmly upholds the right of all our members to be treated fairly, with respect and free from threatening or inappropriate behaviour — including sexual assault, sexual or other harassment, acts or threats of violence, intimidation or discrimination — and to work, study and live in a safe and caring environment.

Many resources exist to help our members. We provide support and guidance to all UNE community members concerned about threatening or inappropriate behaviour.

We are committed to providing a respectful, safe and secure learning, living and working environment.

Safety and respect is central to UNE’s culture.

It starts with Respect for everyone, right Now, and Always.

If you or someone you know are feeling unsafe or unsure what to do about threatening, uncomfortable or unwanted behaviour, you can talk to us about what is happening, how you feel, and what we can do together.

When you contact UNE, you are in control

When you contact UNE, we:

  • Put your safety first
  • Listen to you
  • Offer you support
  • Ask you what you think will help you
  • Explain and explore your options
  • Explain what we have to do to make sure our community is safe, and why
  • Talk to you anonymously if you wish — you don't have to tell us your name.

UNE Action Plan Change the Course Report Recommendations
(PDF, 389.1 KB)

UNE Policy: Prevention of Harassment, Bullying, and Discrimination

Further information

Information for men

Information for the LGBTQI+ community


Your questions answered

Q: How long do I have to wait to see a university counsellor if I have been sexually assaulted?

A: • In the event of a crisis or critical incident, the Service will cancel appointments as needed to respond to an emergency situation.
• If a student reports sexual harassment or assault, the Service asks, where possible, if the student wishes to be seen straight away, as some students may not want to engage in counselling. We are guided by the student where possible.
• There is a counsellor dedicated to work only with students living within the UNE Residential System. That counsellor has an urgent/emergency appointment set aside at 2pm each day, which a Head of College or the Residential Student Leaders can book on behalf of any student they are concerned about.

Ask a question

More questions and answers

Anonymous incident report form

VC's Advisory Committee

The Vice-Chancellor's Advisory Committee consists of student and staff representatives from key UNE areas, who will help shape and implement UNE's Action Plan.

Koady Williams

Koady WilliamsSince commencing his studies with the University of New England in 2014, with a Bachelor of Business/Bachelor of Laws, Koady has been an active member of the UNE community. Koady has been an advocate of the student voice from within student groups such as UNE Student Association and a number of University governance committees and workings groups, and continues this representation as a member of the Respect Now Always Vice Chancellors Advisory Committee. Koady brings to the committee concepts and strategies to facilitate greater student communication and engagement around the topical area, as well as informed advice on planned strategies to implement the recommendations provided by Change the Course: National Report on Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment at Australian Universities.

Areti Metuamate

Areti MetuamamteAreti Metuamate is Deputy Master and Director of Student Relations at St Albert's College. He is passionate about enhancing the student experience for students from all backgrounds, and he has a strong focus on equity and diversity.  Having worked in four different university colleges in Australia, Areti is committed to building a culture of respect in the UNE colleges so that all students and staff feel safe, valued, and empowered to achieve their full potential.

Annette Stevenson

Annette Stevenson is Manager of the UNE Student Support Counselling Service which comprises a team of 4 registered psychologists. Annette has been with the Service off and on since 1992 and full time since 2004. She came to that role having previously coordinated the Armidale Sexual Assault Service for 3 years in the early 90s. Annette was also a supervisor within the former Armidale Child Sexual Assault Service for over 10 years. She piloted the Sex and Ethics Program at UNE in 2007 and 2008 – a program developed by Moira Carmody who, with Karen Willis,  are founders of the Full Stop Foundation which aims to prevent sexual assault and domestic violence. The Sex and Ethics program taught skills in how to negotiate safe and ethical relationships. Annette also coordinated the former UNE SHAPES program – a Sexual Harassment and Assault Peer Education and Support program supported by the UNE Residential System for over 10 years, but which unfortunately ceased end of 2011. She was also Secretary on the Armidale Women’s Shelter Management Committee for 6 years until end of 2015. Annette’s qualifications are BBSc (Hons) La Trobe, M. Psych (Couns) Monash, and the thesis for her Masters (conferred in 1992) looked specifically at post-traumatic stress disorder in children.