Safer communities

As a student or staff member you can receive confidential advice and support about responding to threatening, inappropriate, and concerning behaviour.

If you require urgent assistance on campus, contact Security on 0800 842 8888.

If you are imminent concerned about your safety or the safety of someone you care for, call the emergency services on 111.

If you or someone you know is in crisis or experiencing moderate to severe mental health issues, you can call Te Haika on 0800 745 477. Te Haika can connect you with a mental health professional 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

By identifying behaviours of concern early, the Student Interest and Conflict Resolution team works with others across the University to respond to and resolve issues in a supportive and non-adversarial manner. They assess risks, identify support needs, and work alongside you and others to ensure a safer community on campus.

Seeking help

You can have a confidential conversation or receive advice from the Student Interest and Conflict Resolution team about any of the following:

  • threatening or aggressive behaviour
  • bullying or harassment
  • unwanted attention
  • racism, xenophobia, homophobia, discriminatory, inequitable, or hateful behaviours
  • have concerns for your safety or the safety of someone else
  • are worried about someone’s wellbeing or welfare
  • family violence.

To have a confidential conversation or receive advice please email the Student Interest and Conflict Resolution team: studentinterest@vuw.ac.nz

Domestic and family violence

During the COVID-19 pandemic, people might feel more stressed with financial pressure, requirements to stay at home, worries about employment or studies, and uncertainty about the future. The impacts of the pandemic on families and communities do not cause domestic and family violence. However, they could exacerbate the conditions leading to violence, and mean people using violence have more opportunities to conceal and perpetrate violence, and further isolate their partners. It is OK to ask for help.

What is domestic and family violence?

Domestic and family violence can manifest in several ways, including:

  • Psychological or emotional abuse: threatening to harm you, children, pets, or themselves; damaging belongings; stalking; isolating friends and whānau; actions or threats; constant put downs and belittling; exposing children to trauma.
  • Economic abuse: withholding money; monitoring finances; making all the financial decisions.
  • Sexual abuse: being forced to have sex; being made to engage in sexual activities.
  • Physical abuse: slapping; beating; punching; kicking; strangling; shaking; biting; pinching. It may involve using weapons and can cause serious injury or fatality.
  • Spiritual abuse: feeling as though your spirit/wairua is being attacked; being prevented from expressing your spiritual or religious beliefs; using religious beliefs to justify using violence.

I think I need help

There are services to help and support people experiencing domestic and family violence. If you are in immediate danger and cannot call 111, get to a safe distance and then ask a neighbour over a fence, or a passer-by, to call 111 for you. Your safety comes first. If it's not safe to speak, push 55 on a mobile (or push any number on a landline phone) to be put through to Police.

The following organisations continue to be available for people needing help:

Shine—call 0508 744 633

Women's Refuge—call 0800 733 843

Te Whare Rokiroki, Māori Women's Refuge (Wellington)—call 0800 733 843

It's not OK—call 0800 456 450

The Student Interest and Conflict Resolution team (Monday to Friday 9 am to 5 pm) can provide confidential information, advice, and support for students impacted by domestic and family violence. They can help you manage the impact on your studies and talk to you about support services that are right for you. Email student.interest@vuw.ac.nz for more information.

I'm worried about a friend or whānau

If you are worried someone is being hurt, intimidated, or controlled, it is OK to get involved, and provide information and support. You can listen and help them understand their options. Find out more about how you can help or by calling Shine on 0508 744 633.

Call the New Zealand Police on 111 if you think someone is in imminent danger.

I'm worried about my own behaviour

Admitting your behaviour is not OK takes courage. If your whānau (family) is scared of you, or if people tell you that your behaviour is frightening, you need help. You can change your behaviour. There are people who can help and support you.

You can get support, information, and referrals from Shine on 0508 744 633.

If you are overseas, there may be support services within your country which you can reach out to. You can talk to trusted family and friends about what is happening.

If you need help to find support for domestic or family violence while overseas you can contact the Student Interest and Conflict Resolution team during business hours, or email student.interest@vuw.ac.nz, and they will help you find local support.

Hiding your internet history

You can increase your internet browsing security by:

  • using an incognito browser (browsing the web without Google remembering your activity)
  • clearing your history (the pages you have visited)
  • emptying the deleted emails folder in your inbox.

However, this might not be 100 per cent effective—many browsers have features that display recently visited sites. If possible, use a library computer, your work computer, or borrow a friend's.

For more detailed information on how to clear your browsing history/cache, check the help section of the web browser you are using.