Publié le 24/03/2023

Launch of the SPACE system to prevent discrimination, violence and harassment

The first step this week in the deployment of the SPACE program initiated by our university business school, with the training of sentinel staff on Wednesday March 22! This initiative illustrates the Sorbonne Business School's commitment to the fight against discrimination, sexist and sexual violence (SSV), and harassment, a strong axis in phase with its humanist values of equal opportunity and inclusion, reaffirmed in the establishment's 2022-2024 strategic project.

Formation sentinelles

After setting up a dedicated unit and adopting a "Gender Equality" plan in 2021, the Sorbonne Business School has reaffirmed its commitment to society in its strategic plan 2022-2024 to embody an establishment with the highest CSR standards, with a particular focus on preventing and dealing with discrimination, sexist and sexual violence (SSV), and harassment. In this context,  the Sorbonne Business School at the start of the 2022 academic year,  launched a specific prevention scheme for its entire community entitled SPACE "Sensibiliser-Protéger-Accompagner-Communiquer-Ecouter". This initiative has received support from the Ministry of Higher Education and Research as part of the 2021-2025 national plan to combat SGBV.

One of the components of SPACE is the constitution of a network of sentinels on a voluntary basis among staff and the student population: all of them will be privileged relays among their peers, in support of the establishment's prevention cell.

It is in this context that preliminary training is provided by the National Association of Feminist Studies and Standing Conference of Equality and Diversity Officers within the VSS-Formation network.

The aim of this training day is to prepare and equip the sentinels, whose role is to:

  • assure that students and colleagues are welcomed and listened to in proximity to raise a situation of harassment, discrimination, violence, psycho-social risk;
  • in this capacity, deliver a mission of information, advice and first-level assistance;
  • facilitate referral to the cell or one of its members after agreement from the person concerned;
  • detect situations of suffering where appropriate;
  • exercise their role while respecting the strictest confidentiality for all facts, information or documents identified in the exercise of their mission.

The first training session took place on March 22 with the 7 sentinel staff; a second in April will involve the 16 sentinel students through training provided by Clasches (collective against sexual harassment in higher education).

The SPACE scheme includes other actions to be rolled out over the coming months, including an information campaign, awareness-raising workshops and the integration of 6 hours dedicated to the issue into training programs from the start of the 2023-2024 academic year. A number of associations involved in the fight against discrimination, SGBV and harassment will be mobilized.

The commitments of the SPACE scheme

The Sorbonne Business School acts to promote respectful and egalitarian behavior towards everyone, via awareness-raising actions aimed at the student community and staff.

The Sorbonne Business School has a duty to protect its staff and students from any form of violence, discrimination or psycho-social risk. With this commitment, the Sorbonne Business School strongly affirms its values as a humanistic and responsible establishment.

The Sorbonne Business School wants to help victims feel understood and supported. Members of the dedicated unit and sentinels receive and direct them, in complete confidentiality, to guide them towards solutions.

The Sorbonne Business School is committed to building a shared culture of respect and equality, where everyone is treated with dignity and where violence, harassment and discrimination are not tolerated.

The Sorbonne Business School is working collectively to promote free speech. The dedicated unit, reinforced by sentinels, is available to receive testimonies and hear victims through a considerate and impartial listening.