The School of Physical Sciences has appointed a number of School Listeners for members of the School who want to talk to someone independent, without invoking informal or formal University procedure. All discussions with School Listeners will take place in a safe, confidential environment without the need or expectation that this will lead to direct action.
A School Listener does not replace the existing support structures, or formal routes to complaint, within the University. Receiving support in this way will not preclude any person from bringing an informal or formal complaint. A School Listener is available to all staff and postgraduate students associated with the School of Physical Sciences, regardless of line management or supervision arrangements. Postgraduate students are, however, strongly encouraged to contact their 3rd Party Monitors or Postgraduate Tutors in the first instance.
The SPS School Listeners are:
A School Listener will:
- maintain confidentiality at all times in line with the General Data Protection Regulations;
- make themselves available to staff/students who wish to discuss issues relating to, for example, bullying and harassment, stress and mental health;
- be contactable by staff/students during working hours, but they are not expected to be responsive immediately;
- provide a friendly, supportive, independent and safe environment to individuals, listening to concerns in good faith;
- provide information on University and external resources for coping with stress, mental health and other issues.
A School Listener will not:
- make judgement or convey opinion on the situation as presented;
- investigate allegations or encourage a particular course of action;
- undertake the duties of a line manager, mentor, third party monitor or counsellor;
- make findings nor decide on the validity of a complaint;
- refer the issues upwards without express permission or unless an individual is considered at risk;
- represent members of staff in any formal proceedings.