Broadcast: News items

Proud to be Sussex

Vice-Chancellor, Adam Tickell

Happy Pride to everyone at the University of Sussex. Summer 2019 sees three Pride events in Brighton: 14 July is the Disability Pride Brighton Festival, Trans Pride Brighton & Hove takes place on 20 July and Brighton & Hove Pride is from 2-4 August. The University of Sussex is proud to sponsor Pride, and aims to be an advocate for our LGBT+ community. 

The LGBT+ history of Sussex

In the last year we have celebrated our long LGBT+ history, which includes supporting LGBT+ student groups on campus since 1970, and being home to the pioneering Centres for Sexual Dissidence and Gender Studies. Staff at Sussex shared their work on the LGBT+ history of Sussex at the Brighton and Hove museum this year.

Research and teaching in LGBT+ issues

We continue to support research and teaching in LGBT+ issues. For example, we have long-running teaching programmes in Sexual Dissidence and Gender Studies. We have published important work on hate crime against Muslim people and LGBT+ people and on the implications of Artificial Intelligence on sexual orientation. Our researchers are committed to challenging heteronormativity in education. We have supported visionary arts programming with LGBT+ artists of colour and widening participation projects working with local groups.  In the past week our research into the treatment for LGBT+ refugees has been covered in the media.

Our commitment to inclusion

As an employer, we have an institutional commitment to inclusion, and Pride is a good moment to reaffirm our commitment to this value. The University has a vibrant LGBT+ staff network and a new trans and non-binary staff network, and we published a new trans and non-binary policy statement in November 2018. We have also signed up to the Stonewall Diversity Champions scheme and aim to submit our first application to the Stonewall Diversity Index this year, to benchmark ourselves and focus on areas for improvement, with our ultimate goal of being in the top 100 of employers by 2025.

Our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy

Our support for LGBT+ rights and inclusion is an integral part of the University’s commitment to building a more inclusive community. Inclusive Sussex, the University’s first Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy, launched last summer, sets out a bold vision for the institution to ensure the transformation we are making is truly inclusive and brings benefits for everyone. Our ambitious goal is to remove all institutional barriers that prevent staff and students from succeeding and to create an institutional culture that means all can thrive.

Our work on disability, race equality and gender equality

As well as signing up to the Stonewall scheme, we have joined Disability Confident and, working closely with students in Access Sussex and the Campus Accessibility Forum, will be creating an action plan to progress to the higher levels of the Disability Confident scheme. Work on race equality now has a dedicated focus under the umbrella of our Race Equality Charter programme, supported by a dedicated race equality charter manager. We continue our work on promoting gender equality, including closing the gender pay gap. Our actions in this area are being considered together through our Athena SWAN work, as we work to submit our institutional renewal this November.

Our vision for an inclusive Sussex

The Inclusive Sussex vision is deliberately ambitious. It is designed to continually challenge us to do better. It is not something we can deliver easily or quickly; it is a seven-year vision for the future we want to create. It is important that we take steps to make lasting cultural change, rather than gestures to tick boxes. We recognise that transformation on this scale is challenging and that change takes time. Throughout, we will show kindness and integrity in the way we operate and undertake to treat everyone with dignity and respect.

Adam Tickell, Vice-Chancellor

Posted on behalf of: Vice-Chancellor
Last updated: Friday, 12 July 2019


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