The University of Bristol is committed to providing a positive experience for all students and staff. We believe that bullying, harassment, assault and discrimination are never acceptable.

What is physical assault?

Physical assault is when an individual or a group attacks a person physically, with or without the use of a weapon, or threatens to hurt that person. It can include scratching, pushing, kicking, punching, throwing things, using weapons or physically restraining another person. 

Physical assault can happen to anyone, regardless of gender, age or any other characteristic. However, if the assault was motivated by hostility towards a person or group due to a protected characteristic, that is considered a hate crime. Physical assault within relationships, or between family members is classified as domestic violence.

Immediate help

  • Are you in immediate danger? If you are in immediate danger or seriously injured call 999 (or 112 from a mobile).
  • Find a safe space.  If an incident has just happened, try and find somewhere you feel safe. If you are at the University you can call University Security on 0117 3311223 or go to your nearest University building and ask someone to phone Security for you.

Support for students 

  • Report and Support. You can use the Report and Support system to ask to speak to a member of the University’s Student Wellbeing Service for advice and support.
  • Have an informal conversation with the Student Complaints Officer (student-complaints@bristol.ac.uk, 0117 394 1820) or a Bristol SU Just Ask adviser.
  • University services for academic, health and wellbeing support, including the Students’ Health Service.
  • Consider submitting extenuating circumstances if your studies have been/are being affected.

Support for staff members

 Other sources of support

  • Speak to a GP or phone 111 out of hours if you are concerned that you might have been injured. If your injuries are severe, go to your nearest Accident and Emergency department.
  • Bristol Against Violence and Abuse (BAVA) provides information about different types of violence and abuse and support services that can help. There is also information on how to help others and how to raise awareness of violence and abuse.
  • Victim Support provide advice and support for anyone who is the victim of a crime, including physical assault and violence.

Reporting for students and staff members

  • Report and Support. Staff and students can report an incident anonymously using the University’s Report and Support system.
  • To the police. You can report a crime using the non-emergency number, 101.
  • Make a formal complaint using the University’s Acceptable Behaviour Policy (for students) or to your HR Operations team (for staff)
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