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Keeping Safe

Information about the services available in relation to wellbeing and confidential advice services including the University Chaplaincy and University Counselling


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Advice, information and contacts about security arrangements on campus.  Also information about personal safety, crime prevention and personal property security.


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This Policy describes the procedures and named officers with responsibility for safeguarding at Aston University.

If you have a concern about the wellbeing of another student or a staff colleague here at Aston you can use this email link to alert the University.  Your email will be dealt in confidence under the terms of the Safeguarding Policy mentioned above.

If your concern is an urgent/emergency situation do not use the email address, you must contact Security on the 24 hour emergency phoneline:

  • Only 2222 (internal)
  • 0121 359 2922 (external)

 

Recent events around the world remind us all of the terrorist threat we face, and that the police and security agencies are working tirelessly to protect us.  It is, however, also important that the public remain vigilant and be aware of how to protect themselves if the need arises. 


The likelihood of any of us being involved in a terrorist attack on the UK mainland is still low, however please remain vigilant and report any suspicious behaviour or activity to the authorities. An information film that provides advice on the steps to take to keep safe in the event of a firearms or weapons attack can be accessed via this link.

Prevent is the name given to the strand of the Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 that applies to a variety of public sector bodies including schools, Further Education and Higher Education.  Information on the Act itself can be found here. 

In terms of what this means for universities, their students and their staff, the intention of the legislation is to prevent people being drawn into terrorism.  The Government has through this legislation imposed a series of duties on universities.  Universities are being monitored on their implementation and commitment to the Prevent agenda by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE).

Universities have to ensure that freedom of speech and academic freedom are protected within the context of current legislation.  Universities must also ensure that there is sufficient and appropriate pastoral care available on campus, through services such as our Multi-faith Chaplaincy service based at the Martin Luther King Multi Faith Centre and our Counselling services, as well as Programme Directors and Personal Tutors.

Aston University has formed a Prevent Steering Group which includes representation from Aston Students’ Union and is chaired by a member of the University Executive.  The University has taken the approach that, where possible, the Prevent duties will form part of the safeguarding procedures we already have in place to protect all students and staff.

The University is required to have policies and procedures to ensure that external speakers are not allowed a platform on campus to air fundamentalist views that may encourage vulnerable people to follow an extremist path.  There are requirements on the University to ensure that its computer networks are not used for distributing extremist material that might lead someone into terrorism.  Aston University has updated its existing policies to ensure that we are meeting these obligations, while still maintaining its fundamental objectives for free speech.

Universities are being asked to assure the Government that they have effective controls in place to prevent people being drawn into terrorism.  Universities are expected to have clear methods of communication where students or staff can raise any concerns about another student/member of staff who they believe are being drawn into terrorism.  This includes the creation of a Channel Panel, chaired by a senior member of University staff, who will be the conduit to refer students or staff where appropriate, very importantly, only with the student or member of staff’s consent to the Government’s Channel Programme.

The University has a confidential email account where students or staff can alert us to concerns about the wellbeing of another student/member of staff.  Issues can be raised about mental health issues, self-harming, suicidal thoughts and/or being drawn into terrorism for example.  This list is not exhaustive.  All messages will be dealt with in confidence and in line with the University’s Safeguarding Policy.  Malicious/mischievous use of this email address will be treated as a disciplinary matter.  The email address can be found here: student_concern@aston.ac.uk 

Important this email address must not be used in emergency situations where there is imminent danger to person/others, in emergency situations please contact Aston Security on the 24 hour emergency phoneline:

•Extension 2222 (internal)  

•0121 359 2922 (external)


Aston Students’ Union advice on staying safe online
Aston Students’ Union provide confidential information and support on reporting hate crime
Aston Students’ Union confidential listening and information service