Guide to Being Trans at Warwick
There is an active trans community at Warwick, for students and staff alike. The easiest way to make contact is to get in touch with one or more of the representative bodies below.
Many (though not all) trans people seek to change their name and title to align with their gender identity.
For students, changes of name & title can be requested via the student records online system. In the right hand side ‘Edit my personal data’ panel click the option that reads ‘Request change to record held for name and title’. As well as changes to names & titles (write-in field), there is also the option to leave the title field blank, as well as to request a new university card.
Any change of name (though not title) will also necessitate sending a copy of some form of ‘evidence’ for the name change, such as a birth certificate, passport, driving license or deed poll. This can be done in person at student reception in Senate House, or by email (email@example.com).
This change of name/title should be fed through to the departmental and SU systems automatically.
It is also possible to set a ‘preferred name’ within the Warwick system by choosing the ‘Edit my preferred name’ option within the same panel. This name will be used in informal communication sent to you by the university, and should be used in most instances in preference over your legal name e.g. module registers, pigeonholes etc., but cannot be used on official documentation such as degree certificates or transcripts.
Dual IT accounts may be requested from ITS if a trans individual wishes to continue using their previous name under certain circumstances i.e. in conjunction with their teaching commitments.
For staff, changes to name and title may be made by completing a Detail Amendment Form and sending it to Payroll, HR, University House. You may leave the title box blank if you wish to use no title. Any change of name (though not title) will also necessitate sending a copy of some form of ‘evidence’ for the name change, such as a deed poll.
Changing your gender marker on your Warwick records
Many (though not all) trans people seek to change gender markers to align with their gender identity.
For students, changes to the gender marker held by the university can be requested via the student records online system. In the right hand side ‘Edit my personal data’ panel click the option that reads ‘Request change to record held for gender’. As well as changes to gender markers, there is also the option to change your name & title on this form too, as well as to leave the title field blank, and to request a new university card & photograph. You may choose a date from which you would like such changes to commence.
Possible gender markers within the university’s system include ‘male’, ‘female’, ‘other’ and ‘prefer not to say’.
Possession of a gender recognition certificate is not required in order to change the gender marker held for any member of staff or student.
For staff, changes to gender marker may be made by contacting the relevant departmental administrator. Administrators should be able to provide an HR form with a relevant section for changes of gender marker. If it is desirable not to disclose directly to the departmental administrator, the HR department may be contacted directly. The relevant contact is Sandra Beaufoy (S.Beaufoy@warwick.ac.uk).
The university’s Trans & Gender Reassignment Policy supports trans individuals’ right to use facilities in line with their gender identity. Trans individuals should not be asked to use accessible facilities or facilities corresponding to their birth-assigned gender against their wishes.
Many transitioning trans people & non-binary gendered trans people do not feel comfortable/safe in gendered facilities, and should be provided with access to gender-neutral toilet & changing facilities. The university does not currently have all-gender toilets in all of its buildings, nor gender-neutral changing facilities in all its sports buildings. The main sports centre does have some gender-neutral toilets & changing facilities. However, all new builds will include all-gender toilets, and a program of renovation is currently seeking to ensure all buildings have some all-gender toilets provision.
A map of current gender-neutral facilities can be found here.
The following sources of support exist within the university & union, and may be able to provide support to trans individuals depending on the issues involved.
- Trans Community Support Group, space for trans people and tose questioning their gender identity to discuss trans & gender identity issues in a relaxed environment with others who are part of the Warwick trans & questioning community.
- Warwick SU Trans Officer, the SU’s officer elected to represent trans students (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Warwick Pride, the SU’s society for LGBTUA+ students, in particular the Trans Officer (email@example.com).
- Warwick LGBTUA+ Staff Network, a staff-led network for LGBTUA+ staff.
- LGBTUA+ Staff Buddy Scheme, offering an LGBTUA+ 'buddy' for colleagues new to Warwick or the network.
- Warwick SU Advice Centre, the SU’s advice service, offering support on everything from housing issues to formal complaints.
- Wellbeing Support Services, a general port-of-call for student welfare & signposting to other services.
- University Mental Health team, a team of mental health coordinators available on a recurring basis.
- University Counselling service, access to professional therapeutic counselling. There is also a 'sexual orientation, romantic orientation, and gender identity group' for students who would like to think, together with others, about their identity in relation to either their sexual orientation, romantic orientation and/or their gender.
- University Senior Tutors, responsible for the personal tutor system and all issues regarding mitigating circumstances affecting student performance.
- Personal tutor (for students), contact details should be given upon commencement of studies.
- Residential Life team, for those living in campus accommodation, it may be of particular note that residential tutors are generally available outside of normal working hours.
- Campus Health Centre, where individuals can access a wide range of health services, including referrals to counselling and gender identity clinics.
- Nightline, a student-run listening service open 9pm to 9am during termtime.
- Chaplaincy, a team of Christian, Jewish and Muslim chaplains are available.
- Dignity Contacts, sources of support across a wide variety of departments whose details may be found in the Dignity at Warwick policy.
- Staff may also want to contact their line manager, link HR adviser or Occupational Health Adviser.
There are two main policies which offer protection to trans students and staff, the Dignity at Warwick policy and the Trans & Gender Reassignment policy.
Dignity at Warwick Policy
The Dignity at Warwick policy sets out the university’s commitments to ensure the dignity of all of its members, as well as outlining the procedures to be followed if harassment or bullying occurs. The policy states that it is the responsibility of every member of the university (staff and students alike) to behave in a way that respects the rights and dignity of others, to value differences in others, and to demonstrate a commitment to upholding the university’s policy on equality & diversity.
The policy lays out guidance for dealing with breaches of the policy, in Appendix A (for staff) and Appendix B (for students). In each case there are informal options, the option of mediation, or the option to place a formal complaint.
Gender Reassignment Policy
The university’s Trans & Gender Reassignment Policy includes a number of specific protections for trans individuals. It lays out the entitlement of trans individuals to be treated with fairness, dignity and respect, and to be free from harassment and discrimination.
The most salient points from the policy are given below:
- The policy covers all trans people, including non-binary people.
- All staff and students should refer to trans peple using their preferred name and pronouns.
- An individual’s trans identity is to be treated as confidential, whether or not they have a GRC.
- It gives trans individuals the right to ask to the university to expunge all instances of their former legal name and gender from their records.
- It explicitly states that university women-only spaces should be accessible to trans women.
- ‘Mx’ and no title options should be made available when asking for an individual’s title.
- ‘Other’ and ‘Prefer not to say’ options should be made available when asking for an individual’s gender.
- All official university correspondence should use non-gendered terminology e.g. ‘if the student wishes, they may…’ rather than ‘if the student wishes, he/she may…’
- Trans individuals will be prioritised with respect to en-suite accommodation on campus, should they desire it.
- Women-only and men-only accommodation blocks are explicitly accessible to trans women/men.
- Trans staff are invited to contact their line manager, link HR adviser or Occupational Health Adviser, who will work with the member of staff to agree an action plan to cover any period of transition.
- Trans students are similarly invited to make contact with a relevant member of staff, who will work with the member of staff to agree an action plan to cover any period of transition.
- The transition action plan may cover the use of gendered facilities, changes to names and pronouns, and absences for any medical treatment, and should be guided at all times by the individual’s preferences.
- No trans individual should be required to use disabled facilities, nor facilities assigned to their birth-assigned gender.
- Normal sick pay and absence arrangements apply for medical absences related to an individual’s trans status, and flexibility should be offered in taking holiday or rearranging working hours and academic commitments. A sick note will be required, but it is not required to state any specifics of the procedure or appointment.
- Job applicants & interviewees should not be asked for their trans status.
- Replacement degree certificates may be requested in a new legal name where a graduate has changed their name post-graduation.
Complaints relating to harassment and bullying on the grounds of trans identity are dealt with under the Dignity at Warwick policy. The policy lays out guidance for dealing with breaches of the policy, in Appendix A (for staff) and Appendix B (for students). In each case there are informal options, the option of mediation, or the option to place a formal complaint.
Additionally, staff can report concerns using the Dignity at Warwick Online Reporting Form or request to speak to a Dignity Contact.
In the process of filing a complaint, it is recommended that the complainant contacts one or more of the support services in the 'Support for trans staff & students' section who may be able to offer support and advice.
Details of the SU's complaint process can be found here. The SU Advice Centre supports students who have experienced discrimination and harassment, and can help initiate SU complaints procedures against individuals involved. They are also able to support students filing complaints via the university’s complaints procedure, as detailed above.
Within the university, transphobia and hate crimes/incidents can be confidentially reported to Wellbeing Support Services, the International Office, the SU Advice Centre, or a residential tutor (where relevant).
If you would like to report the hate crime/incident externally, you can report hate crime/incidents directly on the Coventry City Council’s website or with the support of a third party hate crime reporting centre such as the SU Advice Centre.
In the process of reporting a hate crime/incident, it is recommended that the complainant contacts one or more of the support services in the 'Support for trans staff & students' section who may be able to offer support and advice.
An individual’s trans status should not be revealed to others without their consent. Where it is absolutely necessary for a member of staff to inform another member of staff, when and how this is done should be agreed with the trans individual. Alongside their trans status, a trans individual’s birth-assigned gender and name should be treated as strictly confidential.
Wherever possible, old records (such as for academic records and prizes) should be updated to reflect the correct name, title and gender. Trans individuals may request the redaction of instances of their birth-assigned gender and name from their university records. See the 'Redaction of previous information' section below.
It may be distressing and potentially problematic for trans individuals’ university records to contain information pertaining to their birth-assigned name and gender. Trans individuals may request the redaction of instances of their birth-assigned gender and name from their university records. Contact Sandra Beaufoy (via S.Beaufoy@warwick.ac.uk) in HR to make arrangements for this.
The university’s Trans & Gender Reassignment Policy lays out the procedure for trans individuals’ absence due to medical appointments, surgery etc. Normal medical appointment, sick pay & absence arrangements apply to such absences. Flexibility is offered in taking holiday or in rearrangement of working hours and academic commitments. Whilst a sick note is required to cover such absences, it is not required to state any procedure being performed.
The university has committed to providing replacement degree certificates for trans individuals who change their name post-graduation. In order to request such a replacement, complete this online form. A comment should be included to request the change of name. A scanned copy of current ID showing the requested name should also be attached.