Rainbow @ WITT

We value and celebrate diversity at WITT. It is important that everyone feels able to be themselves, express their individuality, and be free from discrimination, harassment, bullying and intolerance at our campuses, in our classes, and in our online environments.

We welcome Rainbow (LGBTIQA+) ākonga and kaimahi, and want to ensure WITT is a safe, respectful and equitable place for you to work and study, whether you choose to be ‘out’ about your gender and sexuality or not.

Rainbow

At WITT we use the terms ‘Rainbow’ or LGBTIQA+ to refer to students who identify as:

  • lesbian
  • gay, gender-diverse, gender-fluid
  • bisexual
  • transgender, takatāpui, two-spirit
  • intersex
  • queer, questioning
  • asexual, agender

The plus (+) symbol recognises that there are many other terms that refer to members of the Rainbow community in different countries, communities and sub-cultures, and you are welcome to self-identify in any way that you choose.

Important Information

Your name

We recognise that for some people, the name given to them at birth does not reflect their identity now, and that calling you by the wrong name (‘dead naming’) can be hurtful and upsetting.  We want to avoid this happening to you at WITT.

While you may be required to provide your full legal name on some documents, such as when enrolling, the name used on your ID card and in class should reflect your identity and the name you are known by.

If, at any time, you would like this changed, or would like support to change your name legally, please let us know, so that we can help you to do this.

Click here for information on legally changing your name. 

Your gender

Our enrolment form offers ‘female’, ‘male” and ‘another gender” as options. Please choose the option that reflects your gender identity, and let us know if you would like this to be updated at any time.

Click here for information on legally changing your gender. 

Your pronouns

We understand that part of showing respect and fostering an inclusive environment for learning involves using pronouns that affirm you in your gender identity.

We encourage you to share your pronouns with your classmates, tutors and other staff, and to let us know if you are being mis-gendered, so that we can support you to make sure this doesn’t keep happening.

Coming out

‘Coming out’ (revealing your gender or sexuality to others) is a choice that you make when and if you are ready. You are not obliged to tell anyone about your gender or sexuality. When and where you choose to be ‘out’ is up to you.

You do not have to be ‘out’ at WITT, to your tutors, or to anyone else. It is your choice and we are here to offer you support.

Rainbow Room

A Rainbow Room is available in room D019.2 at the New Plymouth campus. This is intended as a safe space for Rainbow students and their allies where you can relax, study and meet other like-minded people. You will also find information about local events and activities, and be able to connect with advocates and services in the wider community. Please respect the space, respect each other and clean up after yourselves.

If you have concerns or suggestions related to the Rainbow Room and how you would like to see it used, please contact Rainbow@witt.ac.nz

Bathrooms

Gendered and non-gendered bathrooms are available on our WITT campuses in New Plymouth and Hāwera. You are welcome to use the bathroom that aligns with your gender identity.

All gender/unisex bathrooms are available in the following locations:

  • Te Whare Mātauranga – Library/Learning Resource Centre
    L14: In the foyer opposite the exit door (with disability access).
  • A Block - School of Nursing, Health and Wellness Building
    A308:
    From the lift, turn left, go through the double doors and turn left again.
  • D Block
    D012: On the ground floor, at the downhill end of the building, just inside the entrance doors by the old gym (with disability access). 
    D017: On the ground floor next to the Rainbow Room
  • F-Block – Art, Design and Creative Industries 
    Entry is via the main F-Block corridor on the wall opposite the doors to F3/F6 (with disability access).
  • Union Street Campus, Te Hāwera
    All bathrooms are located past the kitchen, including an all gender/unisex bathroom (with disability access).
  • Other locations TBC

Discrimination

If you experience homophobic, transphobic or any other form of discrimination, abuse or victimisation, it is important that you tell a staff member.

It is not OK to disclose information about someone else’s gender or sexuality without their consent. ‘Outing’ someone without their permission is a form of harassment, and will be taken very seriously.

Discrimination, intolerance and ‘outing’ someone without their permission are not OK at WITT, and we want to do everything we can to ensure you feel safe and respected at all times.

As an educational institution, we see education as the solution to most problems, and we hope that you will be proactive about letting us know when and how we can do better, so that you have every opportunity to be who you are and succeed in your studies.

If at any time you feel unsafe, unwelcome, excluded or marginalised, please let your tutor or a member of the Student Success team know, or contact Rainbow@witt.ac.nz

Complaints

If you witness or experience harassment, bullying and discrimination at WITT, we want to know, so that we can foster an enabling and inclusive environment where all people are treated with dignity and respect.

Our Addressing, Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination Policy is intended to ensure complaints are taken seriously and are dealt with promptly and with due sensitivity.

The Complaints Policy details the processes involved in making a formal complaint and the Complaints Form is available here.

If a complaint is made, it may also be dealt with as a breach of the Staff Code of Conduct or Student Code of Conduct.

We encourage you to seek support from the Student Success Team, Student Leaders or Director of Student Services, if you are considering making a complaint.

Advocacy

If you have suggestions, feedback or concerns about your experiences as a student at WITT, please contact the Student Voice Team.

Student Voice provide advocacy on behalf of learners and are responsible for promoting a culture at WITT that is inclusive and values the learner voice. Send us an email here studentvoice@witt.ac.nz 

Representation

Student Leaders act as a liaison between the institute and the student body.  By listening to the student voice, we are able to improve your experiences at WITT. 

It is important to us that our Student Leaders reflect the diversity of students on campus, and Rainbow representation and voice is valued and important to us.

If you are interested in becoming a Student Leader, please contact Zanetta Hinton (she/her), 06 757 3100 ext 8768 or z.hinton@witt.ac.nz

Rainbow community

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