A Safe University Community

Are you coming on too strong? Think first.

The safety component of this campaign will be focussed on mitigating instances of sexual assault and sexual harassment on campus and in our wider community.

Throughout this component of the campaign we will be focussed on raising the awareness of sexual assault and sexual harassment and lifting the visibility of support services which are available for students and to ensure that there is a consistent stream of information available to students.

The idea of ‘Are you coming on too strong? Think first’ reminds people to think about their behaviour and to assess whether it is deemed to be respectful and appropriate behaviour.

As a part of this campaign, we hope to educate our community by defining and distinguishing what sexual assault and harassment is, and what conduct constitutes it so that we can enable and empower our community members to become active bystanders, and that appropriate prevention and response approaches are embodied.

Sexual Assault

Sexual Assault is a criminal offence and covers many different types of sexual behaviour that can be understood as unwanted or forced, including:

Indecent Assault – unwanted touching, fondling, masturbation
Rape – unwanted oral, anal or vaginal penetration.

Sexual assault is a violation of trust; an exploitation of vulnerability and an abuse of power that can happen to anyone regardless of race, gender, sexuality, religion or disability. Sexual violence does not always include physical touch. It might involve, but is not limited to, coercion, manipulation, grooming or other non-physical acts of a sexual kind that make a person feel unsafe.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment refers to any unwanted or unwelcome sexual behaviour where a reasonable person, having regard for all the circumstances, would have anticipated that the person harassed might feel offended, humiliated or intimidated. It can be a form of discrimination against the victim, and is an inappropriate assertion of power by the perpetrator.

  • Sexual harassment can occur in person or online. Common examples include:
  • making unwanted remarks regarding a person’s appearance or attractiveness
  • asking a person questions about their relationship or sex life
    sending emails with sexual content
  • showing pornographic pictures
  • unnecessarily touching the person without their consent
  • The Australian Sex Discrimination Act 1984 makes it unlawful for a person to sexually harass another person in a number of areas including employment, accommodation and education

If you feel you are in danger, take immediate precautions. If you believe that the person approaching you has overstepped their boundaries or lacked the capacity to read the room (and you), inform them that their behaviour was inappropriate and that they made you feel uncomfortable. If at any point you think that the comment or behaviour of an individual constitutes sexual harassment and you want to report it, you can do so by contacting the Safe and Fair Community Unit at utas.edu.au/safe.