Beating the bullies

November 24, 2006

This week is anti-bullying week. Just over a year ago, The Times Higher published a report of research by Petra Boynton that alerted institutions to the bullying that is "rife" across higher education.

Last week ("Morale boost bid backfires", November 17), it was reported that Sheffield Hallam University has attempted to address the vexed question of problematic working relationships. The attempt has run into difficulties, but at least the university has tried to take action and will no doubt have learnt from this.

The management at Canterbury Christ Church University failed to resolve inappropriate working relationships and the situation had to be addressed by an employment tribunal ("Race victor: my work 'nightmare'", November 9).

The tribunal found that the university did not have the necessary skills in place to deal with the situation.

Those of us who are digging deep and summoning up the courage to address workplace bullying are finding the road treacherous.

But we are sustained by the coverage given in The Times Higher of the success of colleagues who refuse to be silenced and the universities that are at least recognising there is a problem.

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