Shout-Up! the Newcastle City Council initiative to end sexual harassment in bars, pubs and clubs of Newcastle announces certified venues

Shout-Up! – a scheme to declare some of Newcastle’s most popular pubs, clubs and bars ‘sexual harassment-free zones’ – returns this month with 11 new bars confirmed.

First launched in 2017, Shout-Up! seeks to upskill all venue and bar staff to identify sexual harassment and to intervene safely.

The enhanced scheme now requires all staff to complete bystander intervention training, for all venues to have a publicly available sexual harassment policy and a procedure for dealing with incidents. Shout-Up! also requires certified venues to implement practices that protect staff and patrons from sexual harassment.

The Cluny, The Old Coal Yard, The Cumberland Arms, Spot White, Powerhouse, Rusty’s, The Blonde Barrel, Holy Hobo, and Habita, Domain and Reds Bar within Northumbria Students’ Union, are the first venues to fulfil these requirements, with all staff trained and certified for two years.

As part of the scheme, they are required to:

  • have all staff complete Bystander Intervention Training
  • write and share sexual harassment policies protecting staff and patrons
  • have a publicly available procedure for dealing with incidents of sexual harassment
  • commit to making their venue a sexual harassment free zone
  • have visible signage explaining their participation in the scheme and what patrons can expect to happen in the event of sexual harassment
  • pass six monthly reviews on policies, procedures and training.

Isobel Stewart, Assistant Manager at The Cumberland Arms said, “Being a part of something like Shout-Up! let’s our customers know we will not be ignoring sexual harassment on our premises. The training Shout-Up! provides gives the staff confidence to deal with these situations. It’s strengthening to know we are part of a community of great venues.”

The campaign returns in the wake of an investigation by UN Women in March 2021, which found that 97 per cent of women have experienced sexual harassment, and recent reports of drink spiking and spiking by injection in Newcastle.

Dawn Bowman of the charity Rape Crisis Tyneside and Northumberland, which oversees Shout-Up! said, “It’s clear there is a lot of work to do to make sure everyone, and women particularly, are able to enjoy Newcastle’s nightlife safely. Shout-Up! is just one part of the solution. We’re pleased to be working with venues that take this seriously and recognise their responsibility to our community.”

Newcastle City Council Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Public Safety, Councillor Clare Penny Evans, expressed her support for the campaign, saying, “Newcastle is renowned for its nightlife offer and a huge part of what makes it so successful is the significant amount of partnership work that goes into keeping people safe while they’re here.

“We want everyone to be able to enjoy themselves safely and are always looking at how we can enhance safety measures to make sure people are confident there’s support in place to protect them.

“Shout Up! is a key part of that and I’m really pleased this successful programme is being extended to help keep people safe both inside and outside of the city’s bars, pubs and clubs.”

Shout-Up! aims to certify up to a further 35 to 40 venues in the coming months.

Any Newcastle based venues who participated in Shout-Up! prior to the additional requirements are no longer certified and are asked to contact organiser to enquire about renewing their credentials.