14 September 2021

DUSA will be supporting an innovative campaign which helps enable those who feel vulnerable on a night out to discreetly ask bar and stewarding staff for help.

The ‘Ask for Angela’ initiative aims to reduce sexual violence and vulnerability by providing revellers with a discreet phrase they can use to gain assistance from staff should they find themselves in a worrying or intimidating situation.

The initiative, which was originally launched in 2016, has already gained support across the country.

It is hoped that by ‘asking for Angela’, a person within a club or bar can quickly alert staff and gain their help. Staff will then take the customer to one side and find out more regarding the type of support they need.

As part of the initiative, options available to staff include offering to call a taxi or the DUSA night bus in order to get them home safely, trying to contact friends or family, or as a final resort, asking the individual who may be causing distress to leave the venue immediately.

Staff from DUSA have distributed the posters advertising the initiative discreetly within toilet facilities in the building.

Catherine Coyle, Vice President of Student Wellbeing at DUSA, said,

“With Freshers almost upon us, it seems more important than ever to back this innovative campaign and introduce it within DUSA as a simple yet effective initiative that allows those who may find themselves in a vulnerable situation with an easy and quick way to gain help.

“It will now mean the person ‘asking for Angela’ can leave and get away safely without causing embarrassment or confrontation. However, should a more serious incident arise, then bar staff can contact police to help them deal with the matter.

“We want people to enjoy themselves on a night out in DUSA but we want to remind everyone that should any issues arise that they can now ‘Ask for Angela’ at the bar or by way of conversation with a door supervisor or member of staff and we will ensure that they are safe.’’

Cheryl-Ann Cruickshank, CEO at DUSA, added,

“Anything aimed at keeping people safe has my full support.  This is a very imaginative campaign and if it helps protect just one vulnerable person it will be a success in my book.

“As we head towards Freshers I would urge everyone to think about their personal safety and the safety of their friends during the celebrations this year.

“Asking for Angela is a simple way to flag to others that you feel vulnerable without having to go into detail, it’s a great idea and one that I hope partygoers and DUSA staff will embrace.”

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