Race equity work is not the job of a few individuals, we all have responsibility.
In order to create systemic change, anti-racist practice must be embedded throughout the entire University. From individual interactions, our provision and processes through to strategic operations and infrastructure, we will develop qualitative evaluation methods to assess changes to the lived experience of our minoritised staff and students.
All of our staff will be racially literate professionals who understand their role and capacity as change agents for racial and social justice. Every member of staff will understand the responsibility to continually advance their knowledge of nuanced, contemporary racism and how it manifests within higher education. Staff will uphold these values in their interactions with students, colleagues and our partners.
We will achieve this through:
Inclusive Behaviours Programme
- The development and introduction of an Inclusive Behaviours staff development programme, which will include privilege and anti racism training. This will be complemented by a new Professional Behaviours Framework, which will articulate behaviours expected of staff in relation to inclusivity.
- All senior managers will be required to undertake on-going professional development and immersion activities in race awareness.
Talking about race
- We will ensure there are regular conversations about race and racism through specific campaigns and the celebration of Black History throughout the year.
- Race equity will be a standing item in our committee structures as well as key University events such the annual learning and teaching, and research conferences.
- We will ensure that there are regular educational opportunities available for staff and students to improve their understanding and awareness of how racism and racialisation operates. This will be underpinned by decolonial sociological and historical perspectives.
- Introduction of Professional Behaviours Framework featuring Inclusive Behaviours by June 2021.
- All academic staff to have undertaken Inclusive Behaviours training by September 2021 and new staff within six months of joining.
- All professional services departments to have undertaken the training by June 2022.
- Board and senior managers to undertake a rolling programme of race equality training.
Our progress one year on
- Due to the pressures facing staff during the pandemic, we have not met our target – to date more than 300 places have been made available for the training with further training planned to regain momentum.
- The Board and our Senior Leadership Team have received Inclusive Behaviours training with further training and a reverse mentoring scheme planned.
"I am delighted to launch our Race Equity Strategy. This is not just a glossy document or another one of those pledges that lots of organisations make. It is a commitment from everyone at London Met to make real change. Ensuring race equity goes to the heart of our purpose and it also has an impact on our future success. We will be more successful as a university if People of Colour are represented at all levels and feel equally valued and treated as their White counterparts; and we will be more successful as a society if People of Colour are involved, valued, heard and championed as much and as often as their White counterparts.
"This strategy signals that we won't stand for slow and steady change; we will drive and fight and clamber our way through our processes, our systems and our ways of working to eradicate inequity. You have my personal commitment to this change. I won't waver.
"This is a call to action to all of my colleagues. There is nothing more important than this and I need your help. This action will require you to change. It will require you to look deep inside yourself and accept your own role in the systematised inequity that exists. If we continue to do what we have always done, we are part of the problem. I know it is challenging and I know that the scale of the challenge can be overwhelming but we can do this. I'm right here alongside you to support you in any way that I can."
Professor Donna Whitehead – Deputy Vice-Chancellor