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Reflections of a SSGT following the tragic events of the past week

Last week it was International Women’s Day, and throughout that day I saw positive stories, uplifting messages & lovely photos from organisations, friends and family.

As the week unfolded, it felt like Monday was just a short breather with a week of all too familiar upsetting, difficult & unnerving news stories. Social media feeds were filled with brave disclosures, important but hard to read statistics and at times, even harder to read backlash.

That week I was thinking about the experiences of those close to me, my cisgender friends, my non binary friends, and my friends who went through their own experiences and reminders of discrimination during the recent BLM campaigns as well as this.

I am aware students may have directly experienced some of the inequality and violence that has been highlighted in the news and on social media, or that you are parents or partners of those who have, and that many of you go out on placements and travel back and forth at all hours.

I wonder how you have been during all this, I wonder, especially in lockdown when we are spending more time with ourselves and our thoughts, how you are, if you are supported, if you have someone to talk to if you need.

In the middle of the week, I received a short text from a friend Hey. Just checking in seeing how you are doing. Been a rough 48 hours on social media. The short chat we had from that text was helpful, to acknowledge how it felt a bit bleak and overwhelming, but also to have some positive human connection and a reminder that there are also so many people looking out for each other and wanting positive change.

I’d like to remind you that the invitation from us is there, whatever your circumstances or situation, you are so welcome to reach out to us for support.

It also feels a good time for a reminder of some of the other services here for you at Brighton. I have detailed them below, you may wish to contact them or ask us to find out more.

Wishing you a positive week ahead.

From Katie Roberts – Student Support and Guidance Tutor

Disclose harassment, discrimination, violence or abuse

If you are experiencing any form of harassment, discrimination, violence or abuse, please know that you do not need to suffer in silence. You can disclose an incident to us, either with your name or anonymously. If you identify yourself, our Disclosure Response Team can then help you get the support you need. You can also disclose an incident that you have witnessed.

External Support Services

  • Survivors Network – Sussex charity supporting survivors of sexual violence.
  • RISE – an independent, Brighton-based registered charity that helps people affected by domestic abuse.
  • ManKind – for men affected by unwanted sexual experiences
  • Veritas Justice – Veritas Justice is a community organisation providing support, advocacy and advice for individuals affected by stalking and the professionals supporting them.
  • Brighton Women’s Centre – helping women from all backgrounds, facing all kinds of issues, to live happier lives.
  • Women’s Aid – working against domestic abuse

University Student support

  • Student Support and Guidance Tutors (SSGT) – Our SSGTs are dedicated to supporting any issues which may be affecting your wellbeing whilst at the university. Each academic school has at least one SSGT. They are a great source of information and advice on issues that might be impacting your studies and personal life.
  • University wellbeing service (includes counselling support) – You can register with our wellbeing service, which can include counselling and a range of other wellbeing support. Our wait list for counselling is very short at the moment. You can also find out about all wellbeing services on this page, for example our faith and spirituality support team and university LGBTQ+ support.

Robin Coleman • 16 March 2021

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