Harassment, misconduct or abusive behaviour by a Fellow or member of staff

The College does not tolerate harassment in any circumstances, supports any individual in challenging such behaviour, respects each personal decision as to whether and how to report an issue, will address any reported incident without fear or favour, and will continue to offer personal support in all circumstances. The full statement of our zero-tolerance policy on harassment and misconduct includes further information on available support.

If you have experienced an incident of physical or sexual misconduct or abusive behaviour by a member of staff (including Fellows and other academic staff), your reporting options will depend on whether the member of staff or Fellow is also an employee of the University of Cambridge. You may alternatively or additionally report an incident to the Police, or you may decide to report the incident through the University’s anonymous reporting tool, or you may decide not to report at all. You may or may not wish to speak to the other party about the incident, or to discuss it with friends, family or others, or to seek personal support, for example from a counsellor or support group.

If you are unsure whether the member of staff is also employed by the University of Cambridge, you may make an initial report to the College, or discuss your options with the Discrimination and Harassment Contact or Senior Tutor.

Reporting a Concern: College

Where the member of staff is not employed by the University of Cambridge, the issue may be raised through the Student Complaints Procedure (if the complainant is a student), by completing a concern form or contacting the Senior Tutor.

Reporting a Concern: OSCCA

Where the member of staff is also employed by the University of Cambridge, you may choose to report the incident through the OSCCA complaint procedure, or through the College’s procedures (or both). OSCCA guidance indicates that where the allegation is of sexual harassment or misconduct, the OSCCA procedure should be preferred. OSCCA have produced a flowchart detailing their processes for student complaints about members of University staff.

Summary of Procedure: College

On receipt of your form, or another notification of a concern, the Senior Tutor will respond to

  • discuss the next steps
  • consult you about any choices you may need to make (for example, whether your concern should be investigated by the College or by OSCCA)
  • ask for any further information which may be required
  • offer to meet if you wish to do so
  • ensure you are aware of relevant sources of support

The Senior Tutor will then review the complaint and conduct an initial investigation, if required. If there is a criminal element to the conduct the person bringing the allegation may also report to the Police, in which case the College will normally take no disciplinary action until the Police investigation is concluded. If there appear to be grounds for a disciplinary investigation, and in all cases where such a complaint has been made by an individual who is not a student, the matter will be referred for investigation in accordance with the College’s Staff Regulations or Statutes, as appropriate. If the College Officer charged with leading a process – here the Senior Tutor, Master or Bursar – is unable to do so, or where it would be inappropriate for them to do so, responsibility will be assigned to another individual.

The fact that the College or the University has already taken action (or no action) is a relevant consideration for other procedures but not determinative.

Summary of Procedure: OSCCA
The University’s Student Complaint Procedure is detailed online.