Supporting equality, diversity and inclusion
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) lies at the heart of sustainability and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Two specific SDGs, on gender equality and reduced inequality, show the importance of the intersection between equality and sustainable development.
We share this vision. That is why our parallel Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy, Inclusive Sussex, aligns with our sustainability strategy and sets out high-level commitments and goals to ensure we are an inclusive organisation and address any inequalities of outcomes and opportunity.
Our progress in delivering these EDI goals will continue to be monitored by our Inclusive Sussex Programme Board. We will also support and co-monitor these interlinked strategies as part of our overall sustainability strategy and reporting processes.
Inclusive Sussex sets out several programmes related to disability, gender, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex plus (LGBTQI+) and race. It contains specific targets to:
- Hold a Race Equality Charter award by 2025
- Become a Top 100 Employer in the Stonewall Workplace Equality Index by 2025
- Become a Disability Confident Leader by 2025
- Hold an Institutional Athena SWAN award and for all Schools to hold Athena SWAN awards
These awards will provide independent verification that we are adopting good practice in relation to race, sexuality, disability and gender respectively.
We are also committed to improving gender equality. That is why we have a target to halve the gender pay gap by 2024 and will annually monitor and publish pay gap data with a commitment to taking actions where gaps are identified.
A newly created role of Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Culture, Equality and Inclusion) will lead work to deliver Inclusive Sussex. The post-holder will work closely with colleagues across the University. This will include staff from our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Unit, staff networks, steering groups and self-assessment teams, which are led by our four academic leads for equality (race, disability, gender, LGBTQI+).
We also operate a contextual admissions policy, helping those students that are under-represented in higher education access the University with lower grades. We continue to deliver programmes, such as our Widening Participation activities, in schools, colleges and our community to help recruit students from under-represented groups.
We will continue to work together across the University, bringing together colleagues in our EDI Unit, Widening Participation and Sustainability Teams and beyond to align our overlapping equalities and sustainability agendas.