Bar and restaurant scheme will help keep Sunderland students safe

Dame Vera Baird with Harry Chirnside and Abraham Obinna of Sunderland University Student's Union.
Dame Vera Baird with Harry Chirnside and Abraham Obinna of Sunderland University Student's Union.
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Sunderland University’s Students’ Union is helping its members stay safe - with help from Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Dame Vera Baird QC.

Dame Vera has awarded the Union £2,000 funding to help develop a city-wide bar and restaurant accreditation scheme aimed at keeping students on Wearside safe.

University of Sunderland's St Peter's Campus.

University of Sunderland's St Peter's Campus.

The WEARSafe scheme, led by Vice President: Community & Events Harry Chirnside, will aim to guide students to venues that have been vetted and approved by the Students’ Union and Northumbria Police.

Dame Vera said: “Sunderland is a vibrant city, with a university that offers many opportunities to full and part-time students.

“WEARSafe is an excellent initiative that brings together partners to ensure the safety of students during their time on and off campus.

“I look forward to seeing the project develop.”

WEARSafe is an excellent initiative that brings together partners to ensure the safety of students during their time on and off campus. I look forward to seeing the project develop.

Dame Vera Baird QC

The working relationship between the Students’ Union, Dame Vera and Northumbria Police has continued to grow following a series of previous collaborations, developing campaigns designed to tackle hate crime in the region.

Sunderland City Council has announced an increase in incidents of hate crime, which includes racism and homophobia, and the Students’ Union is prioritising student safety both on campus and in the city.

Harry Chirnside said: “We hope to continue to build on this cohesive working relationship with the city centre, local businesses and Northumbria police as we introduce the WEARSafe scheme to Sunderland.

“The support we have received so far has been brilliant and we are delighted that our strong stance against hate crime is fully supported by Northumbria Police and the Police & Crime Commissioner.

“We want our students to see WEARSafe accredited bars and restaurants and feel confident knowing that the Students’ Union has vetted them and deemed them safe and accessible for all.”