The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

Manchester claims racial equality charter mark

Eight UK universities have been given the award by the Equality Challenge Unit, which also honours institutions for gender equality

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The University of Manchester is one of eight universities that have been awarded a new charter mark recognising racial equality.

Run by the Equality Challenge Unit, which also runs the Athena SWAN Charter for women in STEM areas and a charter for women in arts, humanities, social sciences, business, and law, the Race Equality Charter is awarded at gold, silver, and bronze levels.

Our of 21 universities surveyed, the University of Manchester , along with De Montfort University, KCL, UCL, Staffordshire University, the University of Hertfordshire, Kingston University, and Royal Holloway, received a bronze award.

The Race Equality Charter aims to “inspire a strategic approach to making cultural and systemic changes that will make a real difference to minority ethnic staff and students.”

This will include drawing attention to the BME attainment gap, supporting and developing staff from BME backgrounds, and other efforts to remove barriers to those from a minority background.

The Charter was introduced after calls from the Higher Education Race Action Group, an organisation composed of diversity professionals, academics, and students, with an interest in racial equality in HE.

The ECU carried out a pilot lasting a year, which ended with the awarding of the eight bronze marks.

“It is an incredibly exciting initiative and it has been fascinating to see how universities have interacted with it over the course of the trial,” said Sarah Dickinson, head of equality charters at the ECU.

“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.”