Respect and equality program partnership

La Trobe University is one of four universities in Australia to trial a ground-breaking new respectful relationships education program to help prevent sexual violence.

Led by peak body Universities Australia (UA) as part of the Respect. Now. Always. initiative, the Respect and Equality Program will see universities partner with lead violence prevention organisation, Our Watch, and the Victorian Government’s Office for Women to develop the pioneering program.

Drawing on leading violence prevention and online learning research, the Respect and Equality program will deliver a whole-of-institution approach to preventing violence. It will deliver and implement enhanced workplace standards, training packages, resources and toolkits for leaders, staff and students to promote equality and prevent violence.

As a part of the Respect and Equality Program, an online consent module will be trialled with students over the next 18 months and is part of a whole-of-institution approach to prevent violence — the Respect and Equality Program (REP) — also to be guided and developed with Our Watch.

La Trobe Vice-Chancellor Professor John Dewar said he was pleased to partner with Our Watch and the Victorian Government on this new, evidence-based initiative to prevent sexual violence.

“At La Trobe we have always been committed to promoting a respectful community culture, with student and staff safety and wellbeing our top priority.

“We are addressing this through wide-ranging initiatives under our Respect at La Trobe Program which includes a compulsory training module around consent for all students, a centralised advice and support service called Speak Up for staff and students, and on-campus security measures.

“We have already been partnering with Our Watch since 2016 on a series of initiatives and we welcome the opportunity to partner with them again, and with the Victorian Government, on this new program which will further enhance and refine our approach to addressing serious societal issues around sexual violence.”

Launched in 2016, Respect. Now. Always. aims to prevent and address sexual violence across society by working through university communities.

Read Universities Australia media release for more information on the new program.

La Trobe University: Claire Bowers – c.bowers@latrobe.edu.au - 9479 2315 / 0437 279 903

Universities Australia: James Giggacher – 0413 665 143 or Bella Counihan – 0419 212 219

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