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.

Help make a difference –

*answer our survey,

*contribute to the blog, or

*contact us.

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)

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Bullying of any kind

The recent tragic death of Charlotte Dawson's has again focused attention on cyber-bullying.  There is a push for tougher cyber-bullying laws in Australia.  (If you wish, you can sign a petition asking for tougher laws on cyberbullying).
Charlotte's Law - Tougher Cyber Bullying Legislation
Having suffered harassment, bullying, ostracism and bullying at the University of Newcastle, we are vehemently against any form of bullying.  195 staff and students (current or past) have described the bullying that they have suffered at the University of Newcastle.  We would certainly support any legislation to prevent bullying and harassment and punish those responsible.

45 (yes, forty-five) respondents to our survey about bullying at UoN had attempted or considered suicide.  We do know of at least one attempted suicide on the university campus.  62% of the 195 survey respondents also reported sleep problems and 56% reported suffering from depression.  It is well known that Charlotte Dawson suffered from bouts of depression.

The suicide of Charlotte Dawson is a tragedy.  Any suicide is a tragedy and an overwhelming loss.  That people are pushed that far, whether by cyber-bulllying or workplace bullying, is a crime.  This is why we continue to fight against the entrenched bullying culture and cover-up at the University of Newcastle.


  1. Cyberbullying is seldging and intentionally aiming to harm a person's character or reputation. This is unacceptable.

    Defending a person's rights by simply voicing an opinion or trying to open a line of enquiry isn't cyberbullying.

    Caroline McMillen openly delineates this distinction in her own discussion of cyberbullying. Yet she uses libellious examples to prove her point. There are no comments on this blog like those she describes.

    She has accused people like myself of cyber bullying on the internet which is actually slander because it is untrue.

    We are only interested in speaking and telling the truth about our experiences. How does complaining about bullying constitute bullying?

    We are having a robust academic discussion which has been denied us by the University.

  2. Former senior lecturer bullied out of UoNFebruary 28, 2014 at 1:53 PM

    All forms of bullying is insidious and cowardly. At least with cyber bullying there is generally hardcopy proof. Bullies at UoN (perhaps because they have tertiary qualifications) bully in a more subtle yet extremely damaging way. Being ostracized, denied access to funding and resources, spreading of rumours, being publicly humiliated and given an intolerable workload that prevented adequate time for research was all part of my experience of bullying at UoN.
    My attempt to resolve my difficulties was met by the University stating that I was mentally ill and being forced into accepting a 'voluntary' redundancy.