HCRI academic nominated for National Diversity Award

Dr Billy Haworth, a lecturer in disaster management, has been nominated for the award of 'Positive Role Model' at this year's National Diversity Awards.

Dr Billy Tusker Haworth’s important research, teaching approach and support of students, along with his championing of LGBTIQ+ rights and equality, diversity and inclusion within and outside of the University community, has earned him a nomination for ‘Positive Role Model (LGBT)’ at this year’s National Diversity Awards. The positive role model award recognises an individual within the community who shows selflessness, drives change and works tirelessly to inspire others, and it is a huge yet well-deserved honour for Billy to be recognised under this category.

If you’re one of our Disaster Management students, you will already know Billy. Originally from Australia, as a University of Manchester lecturer, HCRI Director of Postgraduate Teaching, and equality, diversity and inclusion representative, he’s worked in the department for three years. During this time, he has inspired students with his teaching and research, encouraging them to think critically, openly and consider the world through different perspectives outside of their comfort zone.

This is something he leads on by example. Billy positions himself within the queer community when discussing relevant topics in his work inside and outside of class. On one level, this helps to deconstruct the dominant cis-heteronormative images of traditional academia, and on another equally as important level, it offers students of all backgrounds more space to feel safe, welcome and valid.

The same values underpin Billy’s research, which has included using participatory mapping to aid bushfire preparedness for communities in Australia, and exploring how graffiti can help us understand conflict-affected societies, such as Cyprus, where people have used graffiti to express their thoughts on peace, politics, LGBTIQ+ rights, anti-racism, anti-sexism and support for migrant workers, among other topics.

Currently, Billy is researching LGBTIQ+ experiences of disasters, which are often overlooked in humanitarian strategies, despite the unique vulnerabilities faced owing to inequality and marginalisation. His new comparative study of LGBTIQ+ people in the UK and Brazil as they experience the COVID-19 pandemic will offer much-needed insight and suggestions for more inclusive policies and crisis response strategies.

If you’d like to vote for Billy, you can nominate via the link below, until May 18th 2020.


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