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Manchester among first universities to receive Race Equality Charter award

13 Aug 2015

Eight English universities are today celebrating recognition for excellence in advancing racial equality in higher education

The initiative, launched by Equality Challenge Unit in this academic year, follows in the footsteps of ECU’s renowned Athena SWAN charter.

Out of the 21 institutions that participated in the scheme during its trial year, eight were successful in receiving an award at Bronze level. Besides Manchester, the other seven winners are:

  • De Montfort University
  • Kings College London
  • Kingston University
  • Royal Holloway University London
  • Staffordshire University
  • University of Hertfordshire
  • UCL (incorporating the Institute of Education)

Equality Challenge Unit is using this trial year as an opportunity to take on feedback from participating institutions, and will undertake a full evaluation of the charter prior to its full rollout from next academic year.

Sarah Dickinson, Head of Equality Charters at Equality Challenge Unit, said: "It was a privilege to work alongside so many institutions during the pilot year of our Race Equality Charter. It’s an incredibly exciting initiative and it has been fascinating to see how universities have interacted with it over the course of the trial.

"I’d like to personally congratulate those institutions that have received an award in this round. They have all worked extremely hard and I’m delighted that they are now able to celebrate the fruits of their efforts."

Professor James Thompson, Associate Vice-President for Social Responsibility and Chair of the Charter Mark self-assessment panel, said: "Our achievement of the Race Equality Charter Bronze Award is recognition of this University’s commitment to our diverse community and the value it attaches to creating an environment where everyone is respected. We have pledged to take action at all levels (students and staff) and I am personally committed to ensuring equality of opportunity for all.”

Patrick Johnson, Head of Equality and Diversity, said: “This is fantastic news and testament to all the hard work that went into putting together our submission. I would like to thank our self-assessment team which included representation from the BME staff network, trade unions, students union, academic and PSS staff who all worked incredibly hard to make this happen.  We now need to start delivering our actions!”

ECU will be hosting a celebratory event later in the year to thank all participants involved with the trial of the Race Equality Charter. The event will focus on different aspects of the application process, as well as celebrating the charter’s full launch.