ACFID’s Code of Conduct Committee (CCC) welcomed Sue Webeck at its most recent meeting to speak about the journey the Australian National University is taking for behavioral and cultural change in response to the Australian Human Rights Commission’s Change the Course Report.
Sue is the Manager of the newly formed Respectful Relationships Unit, which is a central coordinating unit for sexual assault and sexual harassment management, prevention, policy, training and reporting on campus.
The CCC session was designed to give some blue-sky thinking on how a large and well-established organisation is responding to an identified prevalence of sexual harassment, sexist behavior and sexual assault in their community, highlighting the array of contemporary measures the ANU is taking to ensure a more safe and respectful campus.
The value of the session not only lay in the story, but also in the experience, wisdom and energy shared by Sue. She is an accomplished agent of change, bringing together expertise in program development and implementation, policy, advocacy, community development, and case management, as well as an advocate for violence prevention and LGBTIQ communities.
Clare Petre, the Chair of the CCC, said: “The presentation was particularly timely and relevant to set the scene for the Committee’s consideration of how the Code will respond to the final report into the Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse by the Victorian Institute for Forensic Medicine”.
The Committee re-examined the recommendations for changes to the Quality Assurance Framework following the Prevention of Sexual Exploitation & Abuse Code of Conduct Review that the CCC undertook last year. Whilst these changes have already been flagged and consulted with members, they were released prior to the findings and recommendations of the VIFM Independent Review findings and recommendations of the VIFM Independent Review, and the Committee needed to examine how the Code could respond to these recommendations.
It is hoped that these changes will be finalised and socialised with members in April/May this year, with the implementation date starting from 1 July 2019 (TBC). They are designed to strengthen the Quality Assurance Framework to improve the practice and response of ACFID’s 124 members in the prevention of sexual misconduct.
The Code of Conduct Committee also met with the ACNC’s Commissioner the Hon Dr Gary Johns for an update on the work of the ACNC and in particular, the External Conduct Standards, and with the team from DFAT responsible for the consultation process for Prevention of Sexual Exploitation, Abuse and Harassment.
The CCC meets four times a year. A brief summary of the February 2019 meeting can be found here.
If you have any feedback or questions, please contact the ACFID Code team at [email protected].