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Statement from your Officer Team about student safety

The rise of drink spiking and spiking through injection in clubs across the UK is causing growing concerns about safety within our student community. Everyone should be able to feel safe when out in Leeds without the fear of something happening to them or their friends. This serious safety issue is tainting our students’ experience and we won’t let it be something that prevents us from having a great time!

Photo of the Portland Building on City Campus on a sunny summer day

The rise of drink spiking and spiking through injection in clubs across the UK is causing growing concerns about safety within our student community. Everyone should be able to feel safe when out in Leeds without the fear of something happening to them or their friends. This serious safety issue is tainting our students’ experience and we won’t let it be something that prevents us from having a great time!  

As an Officer Team, we made student safety one of our priorities this year. We are working with other Students’ Unions, partners, Leeds Beckett University and other organisations across Leeds to tackle this issue. We do not host club nights but all our venues hold a zero tolerance policy towards any kind of inappropriate behaviour, be it sexual, physical or verbal abuse of any of our customers or staff. Should you find yourself being subject to or witness any unwanted behaviour whilst attending events in our venues, please report it to a member of bar staff or security if you feel safe and able to do so, as soon as possible.  

Our partner Voodoo Events, who hosts many popular night outs in Leeds, published a statement this afternoon reassuring students that they take safety in their venues incredibly seriously and that they already have comprehensive measures in place like strict search policies, airport style metal arches, high quality CCTV systems and private medical staff on site. They will continue to implement new ways of securing their venues by working with Forward Leeds, Safer Leeds and the local law enforcement.  

Lucy MacDonald, your Welfare and Community Officer, has set her objective for the year to be improving student safety with a focus on sexual well-being and consent. She is currently gathering feedback from our student population and its perceptions of consent and sexual misconduct within the university environment. The reason for this is so that the Student’s Union can understand the issues in more detail and focus on improving in the areas that need it the most. Read more about Lucy’s objective here and fill in this form if you would like to be part of our research. 

We also wanted to share that students are currently organising boycotts of nightclubs next week across the UK to push these establishments to do more to tackle safety issues at their venues. The Leeds Beckett Students’ Union Officer Team supports the boycott happening on Wednesday 27 October in Leeds

Too often, events like this result in advice being offered to the people who are the most afflicted by these serious safety issues and we want to ensure that this is not the way this conversation goes! It shouldn’t be up to us to constantly protect ourselves and we shouldn’t always have to prepare for the worst. That’s why we’ll continue to push organisations and venues to make this a priority.  

If you think that your friend or someone where you are might have been spiked, tell a member of staff, call an ambulance if their condition deteriorates and stay with them to ensure they’re not alone. More information about this here.  
 

Stay safe,  

LBSU Officer Team x 

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