Bullying at the University of Newcastle (Australia)

We are working to highlight and stop academic workplace bullying at the University of Newcastle, Australia. We are a group of staff and students who have been bullied for speaking out about misconduct.

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This will help us gather as much information as possible so that we can put an end to this bullying with its’ decades-long history.

“Systemic bullying, hazing and abuse generally are identified with poor, weak or toxic organizational cultures. Cultures that are toxic have stated ethical values that are espoused but not employed, and other non-ethical values which are operational, dominant, but unstated.

Such cultures thrive when good people are silent, silenced, or pushed out; when bad apples are vocal, retained, promoted, and empowered; and when the neutral majority remain silent in order to survive. Those who are most successful in such a toxic culture are those who have adapted to it, or adopted it as their own”. (McKay, Arnold, Fratzl & Thomas, 2008)

Monday, October 22, 2012

BULLYING IS AN ISSUE FOR THE WHOLE COMMUNITY

The Sydney Morning Herald states that "Bullying is an issue for the whole community"  The editorial maintains that people with power and influence (e.g. Alan Jones) can look after themselves.  It is the "bullying of the powerless demands a collective response to stop it".

We do not feel that we are a powerless group but we do agree that bullying and investigations into bullying to require a collective response.  This is why we have repeatedly called for an investigation into the culture of bullying at the University of Newcastle. 

The SMH reiterates the fact that
"The human and business costs are huge: a 2010 Productivity Commission estimate put the costs of absenteeism, illness and low morale and productivity at between $6 billion and $36 billion a year. The problem is not confined to business. The State of the Public Sector report tabled in the Victorian Parliament last month found 36 per cent of public servants had witnessed workplace bullying in the past year and 20 per cent had directly experienced bullying. Only 3 per cent had made a formal complaint."

The SMH also states that
"victims must be given the confidence to report bullying, which comes from knowing complaints will be acted upon.  Only cultural change will ensure that people in positions of responsibility have zero tolerance of bullying. ... The campaign against bullying should be above party politics and include the whole community. The state can do more to raise awareness of the illegality of bullying and of the harm it does, but responsibility for change rests with all of us.

All too often, bullies can depend on the rest of us remaining silent when others are victimized. Changing this culture of passivity will take time, but the surest way to stop bullies is for everyone else to stand united against their conduct."

We have seen the culture of bullying flourish unchecked at the University of Newcastle, with most people standing by in silence or colluding in covering the misconduct.  We have been victimized because we refused to stand by silently and refused to collude in covering up misconduct.

We continue to call for an investigation into the bullying that has been happening and continues to happen at the University of Newcastle.

Why is there no-one courageous enough to undertake such an investigation?

3 comments:

  1. where is the place to raise the issues up?

    Even at this website, our words were blocked to be published where else?

    Is there an organisation to deal with the cases we raised up? Can we trust them, not doing the same things as previous VC and DVC of UoN and covering up the events?

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  2. In the UoN, the students and staffs were bullied and knicked out of the School (the School of Biomedical Science and Pharmacy) but could not find out a place to complain and tell what had happened in this School; and also we could not raise up the issues anywhere in the UoN. Because no matter anywhere you go for the complaints, the things / issues you raised would be coverred up. In turn, the person or people who were complained would get back to you and make you further troubles. You might end up to be kicked out of the School or you might have to resign your study or your job for many reasons, anyway you could not stay ...
    The School of Biomedical Science and Pharmacy is a dirty place, needs to be well cleaned. The new VC should do something for the University and the community

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  3. The most revulting group of people are the professoriate because none of them have any guts to stand up and say bullying is rife at the uni and we should do something about it. They are all in safe positions and no one can touch them. The biggest worry is some of the professors have got there by willingly aiding the bullies. Shame on you!

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