Monday 27-07-2015 - 09:16
Today I'm really happy to announce the launch of the lad culture audit report, a detailed analysis of the policies and practices that universities and students’ unions have in place in relation to combatting lad culture and supporting victims and survivors on campus.
For as long as I can remember, student activists and student support staff have asked 'What exactly is "best practice"?' when it comes to creating efficient ways to tackle lad culture, stop discrimination and harassment and create more inclusive spaces on campus. That’s why this report is so important.
This report couldn't have been completed without the collective effort of 35 students' unions from across the UK who submitted information, and allowed themselves to be scrutinised and rated against the national average. Being open and honest about the situation within your institution is a vital first step which all universities who want to attempt to tackle lad culture need to take.
The range of institutions that took part (some with full time women's officers, some with multiple campuses, some with really small campuses) gave us a greater understanding of how policy and practices are embedded on different campuses and where the gaps are.
Lad culture is a complex issue and manifests itself in different ways on different campuses, but, this doesn't mean that's it's impossible to rectify or that institutions shouldn't try. The results from the report shows that most students unions' are actually ahead of universities in terms of creating initiatives to tackle the issues like sexual harassment and discrimination. This only furthers the argument that we need cross-institutional, multiple angled and smartly tailored local strategies that include students AND staff.
The report has enabled the lad culture strategy team to come up with nine recommendations which we hope to develop resources for further in the year.
This work starts today with our pilot unions who have joined us today at the NUS offices in London for the lad culture strategy day. I'm really looking forward to spending the day working with sabbatical officers, student union staff and women's officers and sector specialist to map out local strategies.
Stay tuned to the hashtag #NUSLCD15 to keep up with the lad culture strategy day and watch this space for further information and resources about how other universities can create their own strategies to tackle lad culture on campuses.