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UNIVERSITY OF YORK Council EQUALITY, DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION COMMITTEE Minutes of the meeting held on 2 March 2017 Present:
The Registrar and Secretary (Chair) Dr R Abeysekera Dr C Dessent Dr A Lee Dr P Spikins Dr V Sundaram Professor S Rees Jones The Assistant HR Director The Internal Communications Manager The Head of the Equality and Diversity Office The Director of Student Recruitment and Admissions The Deputy Academic Registrar and Director of Registry Mr Dom Smithies, Community and Wellbeing Officer,
YUSU Dr K Stephenson, Vice-President (Wellbeing and Community), GSA In attendance:
Ms Bridget Carter Ellis, Ms Iona Rodgers
Apologies for absence were received from the Vice-Chancellor, Mr R Armitage and Mrs D Jagger. 16-17/18 Declarations of Conflicts of Interest Members were invited to declare any potential conflicts of interest relating to the business of the meeting. None was declared 16-17/19 Minutes The minutes of the meeting held on 3 November 2016 were approved. 16-17/20 Matters Arising Further to M16-17/3 (Membership and Terms of Reference), the Committee approved the revised Constituency and Terms of Reference, which had Approved Minutes
been revised to align them to the new Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy, subject to the following amendments: Professor Karl Atkin (Head of Department of Health Sciences) to be a co-opted member of the Committee; the titles of the Student Executive Officers to be amended to Community and Wellbeing Officer (YUSU) and Vice-President/Wellbeing and Community ( GSA); the Vice President of the GSA to replace the President of the GSA (with term of office running from September to September). Further to M16-17/8 (Charter Marks), the Committee received an update on the review of the University’s opportunities to engage with other equality charter marks and agreed it would be beneficial to wait until the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy had been fully developed. ACTION: HS AND MA Further to M16-17/10 (Workload Allocation relating to Athena SWAN), it was reported that Departments had been asked to consider the issue of workload allocation for those leading on departmental applications via the Athena SWAN Steering Group. Further to M16-17/13 (Recording and disclosure of disability information in the admissions process), it was reported that a working group had been established-comprising representatives from Departments, Central Admissions and Information Services. The Group would be meeting in the near future to consider the implications and good practice around recording and monitoring disability disclosure. 16-17/21 Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy The Head of the Equality and Diversity Office provided the Committee with the latest draft of the University’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy, which had been further developed in the light of feedback from the last meeting. The feedback had suggested the importance of the strategy being meaningful, ambitious and linked to a plan of action, with a strong emphasis on inclusion. It was noted that the approach includes a high-level mission and vision statement outlining a commitment to 4 key strategic objectives. This would be supported by an Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Framework, which would include the implementation plan. The Framework was still in the development phase, and needed to be aligned to the Operations Plan, while and key stakeholder groups would be involved to agree actions. Approved Minutes
The Committee was asked to reflect on the Strategy in terms of its readiness for ratification, publication and wider engagement across campus. In discussion members suggested: It was important to add KPIs to the Framework to measure and monitor its success. The full range of University activities should be added to the ‘Commitment’ section (i.e. administrative units such as Admissions, Teaching and Learning and Research). It should also try to encompass social and sports activities. The phrasing might need to be amended to show a more balanced approach, e.g. in reference to staff/students and teaching/research. The Strategy was focused on internal needs, and should consider impact on external visitors and the wider community. The Strategy should try to encourage an environment which would encourage disclosure, particularly regarding disability and ethnicity. Wellbeing at institutional level should be incorporated into the Strategy. The reference to “flexibility” needed to be clarified. The descriptive paragraph about the University and its community should be moved from the end of Objective Four, to a more appropriate place within the Strategy. The Committee agreed that this was a very positive document particularly with regards to a developing a culture within the institution. Members were encouraged to submit any further comments that might be incorporated into the revised version. It was agreed that a draft implementation plan should be developed and brought to the next meeting in June. ACTION: MA 16-17/22 Staff Equality Forums The Committee received reports from the following Staff Equality Forums: INCLUDE; LGBTI Matters and the Staff Race Equality Forum. It was noted that the Equality and Diversity Office had scaled back their involvement to allow for the networks to be led internally, through the networks. In respect of INCLUDE, the Committee noted that a new steering group had been established and was due to meet within the coming weeks. The LGBTI Matters forum is also considering the adoption of a steering group approach and had recently held two successful high profile events as part of LGBT History Month celebrations. The Staff Race Equality Forum (SREF) reported that they had held a launch event on 25 January which
had been well attended, and there had been a good response to an all-staff email that had been circulated to invite people to join the network. 16-17/23 Athena SWAN The Committee received a progress report on Athena SWAN (AS) applications. It noted that: The Department of Electronics had submitted their application for Bronze renewal and the result would be known in April 2017. Health Science had secured an extension of their Bronze award while they prepared their application for the April awards round. The internal quality assurance process for approving departmental AS applications, piloted in November 2016, had been successfully rolled out to the Departments applying in April 2017. A small working group had been established to assess the University’s AS action plan 2015-18. The group would evaluate progress and priorities, and analyse the current institutional data, to identify achievable priorities. 16-17/24 Disability and Accessibility Group The Committee was updated on the work progressed by the various sub groups working on accessibility across campus. It was reported that Maria Ayaz, Head of Equality and Diversity, would become Chair of the Disability and Accessibility Group in the interim. 16-17/25 Equal Pay Audit Review The Committee received for information a recent UEB report on the Equal Pay Review and noted the following: The overall mean gender pay gap for all employees was 19.61%, while the overall median pay gap was 18.61%. This level of pay gap was broadly in line with the gender pay gap similar to the UK industry and other Russell Group institutions The mean gender pay gap had reduced by 0.89% since the last report in 2013 and the median by 0.01%. While the number of University employees had increased, the proportion of male and female employees had remained constant. The pay gaps for framework grades were 10.60% mean and 13.68% median. This was explained by the higher proportion of males in higher grades.
An analysis by equal pay for equal value had revealed there was no gender pay gap by grade, with the exception of Grade 6 where it was in favour of female staff. Members welcomed the pay review report and action plan, noting that there appeared to be a significant pay gap at professorial level, which may have been caused by the disproportionate number of males on professorial grades. The committee were generally supportive of the use of positive action in recruitment campaigns. It was agreed that further analysis of the results in this area would be useful, as would further analysis to understand the reasons behind the disproportionate number of females at Grade 6. It might also be beneficial to examine broader areas e.g. attendance data on staff attending the Development and Assessment Centre, as anecdotal evidence of readiness for promotion and success outcomes following completion of the course. A further suggestion was to analyse the staff on fixed term contracts versus those on open contracts, to gain an understanding of any pay gaps. The Committee was updated that the next steps would be to consult with the wider staff community, involving as many groups as possible. It was agreed that regular progress reports should be brought to the Committee. ACTION: HS 16-17/26 Work Being Progressed by Human Resources The Assistant Director of HR provided an update on work undertaken by the HR Directorate in the areas of equality, diversity and inclusion. She drew particular attention to the following: The Mental Health First contact network went live in Autumn 2016. The network comprised 19 members of staff from across the University who had all completed a two-day mental health first training course. The aim of the network was to provide immediate support to employees experiencing emotional trauma and to signpost them to the relevant support services. The network would be formally launched during Spring Term. HR were currently developing policy, procedure and guidance on Shared Parental Leave and Pay, in response to new legislation. The new legislative changes would allow a mother to share her maternity leave with one working grandparent. 16-17/27 YUSU Report
The Committee received an oral report from the YUSU Student Community and Wellbeing Officer, noting the following: There had been a 25% turn out for the recent YUSU elections which was a good result within the sector, as Leeds achieved 20% and Durham only 17%. There had been a diverse range of candidates nominated and elected. Mia Chaudhuri-Julyan, one of the current YUSU Women’s Officers has been elected as Community & Well-being Officer for 2017-18. Mia would be introduced to the Committee at its next meeting in June. The training around positive campaigning, particularly with regard to social media had been extremely effective, with few complaints of bullying and harassment and positive feedback about the nature of the campaigning. Work was currently being conducted into the hidden impact upon departments with regards to Leave of Absences. The equal opportunities sports events had been consistently well attended and had received positive feedback from students and the liberation networks. ‘Give it a Go Week’ had happened earlier in the term, which was a week long programme of events to encourage people to try out new opportunities in an accessible way. The Love York Awards would be happening next term to celebrate all the campaigns, events and achievements of the student body. The consent talks that ran in September 2016 had been recognised as best practice for student safety by the ProtectED scheme. 16-17/28 GSA Report The Committee received a report from the GSA President. The Committee noted the following: The GSA was working with Alcuin College to roll out the pilot for their ‘settling in’ programme to a wider international audience. A wide variety of events were organised through the LGBTQ network to celebrate LGBT History Month which were very well supported. Work was continuing to ensure family housing was incorporated into the University estates master-plan. Mind Your Head had run a very successful Mental Illness Awareness Week, which had attracted a number of high-profile academics to talk about their research into mental illness. Other events, including yoga sessions, continued to be run on a regular basis.
16-17/29 Other Business The Sexual Violence training had been successfully delivered to key staff within the support services, with members of YUSU yet to attend the sessions. The next step would be to roll the training out to all departments. A paper on how best to achieve this would be brought to the next meeting of the Committee. ACTION: VS It was reported that Kate Dodd (Academic Registrar) would become the Chair of the Group on the Student Misconduct Guidance Working Group. The issue of how best to implement consent talks as part of student induction, and whether it should be compulsory, was raised by the YUSU Student Community and Wellbeing Officer. It was agreed that this matter should be discussed in full at the next meeting of the Committee. ACTION: DS 16-17/30 Date of Next Meeting The Committee noted that its next meeting was scheduled for Thursday 15 June 2017 at 3.00pm in D/N/104 (Derwent College).