The Advice Centre runs on certain principles which form the backbone of advice work. They are summarised below.
Students of MMU are automatically members of The Union. You do not need to purchase an NUS Extra card to use our service. We also offer support and advice to prospective students and recent graduates.
We are independent of the university. This means that we can challenge them and assist you in challenging them. We could not do this if our funding came with terms attached from the university.
Any information you tell us is treated in complete confidence. Case notes are kept in locked, fire-proof, filing cabinets. The information we hold is not disclosed to anyone outside the Advice Centre without exceptional reason or your permission after following the procedure in our confidentiality policy.
Conflicts of Interest
Sometimes a conflict can arise where two students come to us with different sides of the same issue wanting different outcomes – for example a student who faces disciplinary action because of complaints by other residents in halls. In these sorts of cases we look carefully at what arrangements need to be made to ensure that advisers do not face conflicts. If the Advice Centre is to deal with both sides we will assign different advisers and support to each side and do not discuss the case between groups. Nor will we pass information from one side to the other. We will discuss the issue with each side in depth if it arises.
It doesn’t matter what your problem is or how it came about. We deal with the here and now to sort out your situation and will not reach a moral conclusion. We will not judge you.
The Advice Centre is open to all students regardless of race, sex, age, gender, religion, disability, sexuality or other factor and all students should feel safe and comfortable coming to us. Therefore we ask that you respect other clients' privacy and The Advice Centre’s arrangements.
Legal and Fair
We are prohibited from assisting people in illegal acts - for instance we will not assist people to apply for benefits they are not entitled to. However, we can help you to rectify situations where people are receiving incorrect income etc.
We also must treat all third parties fairly - for instance, in debt cases, we will not treat one creditor differently to another without good cause.
The Advice Centre works closely with the Student Officers and other agencies and organisations to ensure that students' rights are upheld. To do this we need to show examples of good practice and bad. If we use your case in this way, all identifying features are removed and third parties see only that case study.