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University of Sussex to sign up to Race Equality Charter

The University of Sussex will be signing up to the Equality Challenge Unit’s (ECU) Race Equality Charter (REC) this autumn.

The REC aims to improve the representation, progression and success of minority ethnic staff and students within higher education.

It provides a framework for institutions to identify and self-reflect on institutional and cultural barriers standing in the way of minority ethnic staff and students.

Member institutions develop initiatives and solutions for action, and can apply for an award to recognise their commitment.

The commitment to the REC is set out in the University’s new University’s equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) strategy, which is being launched this week. The strategy reflects feedback from key stakeholder groups, including the Students’ Union, who have asked for the University to sign up to the REC.

Vice-Chancellor Adam Tickell says: “In signing up to the charter, the University will be pledging to undertake a comprehensive self-assessment of race equality across the institution and develop solutions to the issues identified through the self-assessment.

“We are committed to improving the representation and experience of black and minority ethnic staff and closing the attainment and employment gap for black and minority ethnic students.”

Claire Annesley, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Diversity and Equality), says: “Applying for the Race Equality Charter and achieving an award will be a significant piece of work over a number of years. We need to make sure that the University is set up to succeed and that our self-assessment process is thorough and inclusive.

“The EDI Unit are ensuring that we understand the requirements and will have the resources and structures in place to enable the Vice-Chancellor to sign the pledge and for our journey to start.”

A key part of the REC will be hearing a wide variety of staff and student voices.

There will be a staff survey as part of the process and a staff BAME (black and minority ethnic) network is being set up, which will offer an opportunity for staff to share their experiences and to identify solutions and actions they would like the University to consider.

The network will also meet socially and host events. A first meeting is planned for Wednesday 10 October, when staff are back on campus after the summer break.

Any staff who are interested in joining the BAME network and being added to a mailing list can let the organisers know by emailing BAME-Staff@sussex.ac.uk

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Posted on behalf of: University of Sussex
Last updated: Wednesday, 11 July 2018

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