ORAS response to Education Inspectorate report on social safety TU Delft

As ORAS, we are very shocked by the results of the education inspectorate's investigation and we sympathise with employees who have experienced socially unsafe behaviour. It is all the more painful that some employees have experienced a culture where reporting unsafe behaviour was too high a threshold.

As the research report highlights, there is work to be done. The Executive Board expressed that they will adopt the report's advice. Of course, we will continue to monitor this whole process critically. However, as ORAS, we feel that the response to the report could have been more empathetic. As far as ORAS is concerned, the focus should now be on creating a safe climate for students and staff. 

The Education Inspectorate's report focuses exclusively on staff and not students. However, this issue obviously plays out within the student community as well. This is precisely why we are disappointed that students were not properly informed and had to learn about the content of the report mainly from the media. In addition, the Executive Board's reaction to the report was initially only shared with staff members. Transparent communication towards students (and staff) about this report and its consequences should be a high priority for the Executive Board.

In recent years, Delft students (organisations) have gained a lot of experience in improving social safety within their communities. Successful examples include the "Are you OK?" or the "Do raise the alarm!" campaigns.

Also, many associations now have trained confidential contact persons and organise welfare-related activities, such as symposiums and workshops. The lessons learned here not only improve social safety within the student community, but also throughout TU Delft.

We call on the Executive Board to take concrete actions soon to improve the prevailing culture and create a safe climate for all. In doing so, dare to also look at similar solutions once launched in the student community. Together, we can work towards a campus where everyone, student and employee alike, feels safe and valued.