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, December 8, 2014

Trevor Waring - his role as Chancellor of the University of Newcastle

The following comment about Trevor Waring, former Chancellor of the University of Newcastle, by "Anonymous" has already been published here but we feel it warrants a response.

Anonymous said:-
"So if he's such a sham why are numerous organisations still giving him awards or is the whole of the psychology profession in Australia completely duped? Isn't the internet just fantastic! This 'group' (or is it only one person?) gets to say what they like about someone and not reveal who they are ....."

Trevor Waring's private psychology practice and his professional role as a psychologist in Australian is not relevant to this blog.  
What is of concern is that Trevor Waring, in his role as Chancellor of the University of Newcastle, was approached by a number of people who had experienced bullying at the University and had taken no action, despite being a psychologist and despite acknowledging that bullying and victimisation occurred within the University.

As Dr Kate Hartig (former Senior Lecturer bullied out of the University of Newcastle) states

"I do not dispute that Professor Trevor Waring AM is a distinguished psychologist and a leader in his field that cares about his clients. But when I went to him seeking resolution to the extreme bullying I was experiencing at the University of Newcastle he informed me that as Chancellor he was just a figurehead and had no power. More significantly he informed me that my discipline (Geography) had a long history of misconduct and there was nothing he could do.

Regardless of his perceived "powerless" status how could an eminent psychologist ignore mental health issues within the organisation that he represented?"


  1. Is this the mantra of the senior managers at the University of Newcastle - I HAVE NO POWER TO DO ANYTHING!! When I met Kevin McConkey (then Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University) about the harassment, victimisation and ostracism that I suffered at the uni, he said that he was ONLY the Deputy Vice-Chancellor and had NO POWER to do anything about it.... None of these people would do anything because they are paid so well by the University of Newcastle to toe the University's silencing/gagging/ostracising policy.

  2. Although this is NOT about Trevor Waring, it is about AWARDS. I was told by a DVC from an Australian University about their VC who was given an Order of Australia or such like. He was nominated by his friend, but when his wife saw the application she decided it was not good enough. She went into his office and rewrote it. All his staff were aware, no one said a word. The VC got the award.

  3. To the Anonymous person who wrote the above comment. My case was very public.I never hid behind "ANONYMOUS". I am an Observer and previously was an active Contributor to comments on this web site. I too asked for help from Trevor Waring, and found him a really charismatic person. He was approachable, friendly and seemed sincere. I felt he was trustworthy. He was my Chancellor and I looked up to him. He is a really nice person. I still today wonder why he told me he had no power to help me, that he was only the Chancellor. As time has passed I reflect on the management of the University. The Vice Chancellor who has an autocratic position, and a "selected" Board coming from a "country town" that recently has been shown to be full of corrupt and powerful community members. I now wonder whether being unable to help was more a reflection of the management as a whole rather than the position of Chancellor. Either way, Edmund Burke sums it up: "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." My guess is that Anonymous, you still will be too scared to to give your identity. Speaking out takes more then most people are willing to give.

  4. Trevor Waring is obviously a sociopath. What is advice worth as a psychologist?

    That would be like asking for relationship advice from Charles Manson.

    The world is now watching you Trevor, I bet you've gone silent.

  5. I agree. I am sure that Trevor is a fine psychologist. What worries me is his lack of action in an area he would have great awareness of.

    It is true, bullying is psychological battery.

    If anyone could perceive this accurately it would be Trevor. This is why he has no excuse for not intervening when necessary.

    The evidence against him shows he acted with a distinct lack of empathy when required to. Is that kind of behaviour award material?