IHEA Member Community of Practice to Prevent and Respond to Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment

Independent Higher Education Australia (IHEA) members are committed to providing safe and supportive learning and working environments that are free from harassment and assault.

In November 2021, IHEA members, with the assistance and guidance of TEQSA, created a Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment (SASH) Community of Practice to assist participating institutions to make their campuses safer places to work and study, and to increase the capacity of staff and students to respond to incidences of SASH.

The IHEA SASH Community of Practice is intended to build on and enhance the work already being undertaken by member institutions to prevent and respond to SASH.

Currently 74 IHEA member participants are engaging in the IHEA SASH Community of Practice including CEOs and executive leaders of IHEA’s diverse range of member institutions.

Monthly meetings are a key part of this initiative, where members and TEQSA representatives discuss ways and share knowledge on how to improve the quality of prevention and response to SASH.

Topics discussed to date have included the SASH in higher education, the training and education of staff and students, dissemination of information to students about SASH prevention and response, and online safety.

Additional topics to be discussed in upcoming meetings include the establishment of a task force, creating SASH policy framework, higher education residential communities and SASH prevention, safe environments, reporting, timely responding, information and data protection, counselling services, health safety best practice. Self-evaluation of SASH related policy framework and governance will also take place.

The Work of the Community of Practice is also informed by expert guest speakers and the sharing of case studies and examples of good practice in a safe and collaborative environment.

The IHEA SASH Community of Practice is a member driven initiative. Participation is on voluntary basis.

Please contact IHEA if you would like more information about this important initiative.

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