Appendix B: University procedures where cases of inappropriate intimate relationships are disclosed
In all cases where an inappropriate relationship is reported, the student or member of staff will be offered guidance and support. The individual concerned will have the opportunity to consider their options as follows:
- Refer the matter to the Police (where the case disclosed includes allegations of potentially criminal behaviour);
- Not refer to the Police but request the University to investigate;
- Take no formal action.
In the case of 1) above, formal University procedures will normally be suspended pending the conclusion of the criminal investigation. However interim measures may be taken including the suspension of staff or students.
For 2) above, the matter may be investigated through the University’s Complaints Procedure, or the Staff Disciplinary Procedure, or under the Code of Student Conduct. In all cases the matter will be handled confidentially and sensitively, and only subject to one investigative process. In most cases it will not be possible to preserve anonymity in the course of an investigation. However, the person reporting the inappropriate relationship will not be required to meet with the other party involved in the relationship, and while being given ample opportunity to present information to the investigation, will not be required to repeat sensitive information to multiple parties. Measures will also be taken to prevent, or limit, contact between the parties involved in the relationship.
In some cases the person involved in the relationship will choose not to take forward a formal complaint to the University, or to seek a formal investigation. In such cases no investigation or action will be taken which reveals the identity of the person concerned. However the University may take appropriate action relevant to the circumstances – such as staff development or awareness raising activity.
Subject to compliance with its obligations under applicable data protection legislation, the University may share information with respect to the outcome of internal procedures, and the events giving rise to the relevant procedure, to the police or other relevant third parties where it is deemed necessary by the University for reasons of public interest or safety or where it is obliged by law to do so.