To enable us to build a comprehensive national picture of the prevalence and nature of the problem, the Australian Human Rights Commission will conduct a national survey of university students.
The survey – based on research by UNSW's Australian Human Rights Centre and with input from Australian Bureau of Statistics experts – will ask students about their experience of sexual assault and harassment and the effectiveness of reporting procedures.
The aim is to obtain robust information about the nature and scale of the problem to inform further action and development of best practice university policies and procedures.
This type of survey, on this scale, has not been attempted before in Australia and universities have committed almost $1 million to support this important work.
Third, by providing clear guidance on what constitutes harassment or assault, how to report an incident and where to go for support, we hope to reduce any taboos around such reporting and send a clear message that such behaviour will not be tolerated.