Issue date: 21 January 2013
UWE Bristol has risen more than 30 places in the annual Stonewall Workplace Equality Index to 45th position in 2013. Two other Universities are placed higher in this year's table with Cambridge in 11th place and Liverpool John Moore's in 28th. Other Bristol employers featured in the Top 100 are Environmental Agency in 11th (joint with Cambridge University) and Bristol City Council in 21st.
The Workplace Equality Index is Britain's leading tool for employers to measure their efforts to tackle discrimination and create inclusive workplaces for lesbian, gay and bisexual employees. Since 2005 more than 750 major employers have taken part in the Index, using Stonewall's criteria as a model for good practice.
Since UWE Bristol first entered in 2010, great progress has been made. In 2010 UWE Bristol was placed at 192 moving to 134 in 2011 and rising to 77th place in 2012.
Ron Ritchie, Pro Vice-Chancellor and Diversity Champion at UWE Bristol, says, "At UWE Bristol we take workplace equality seriously and this is a really encouraging achievement demonstrating a commitment to improvement and ongoing development. The Equality and Diversity Unit and the LGBT network at UWE deserve accolades for striving to get things right. The steady rise in positioning since we started to take part in the Stonewall Index is great to see. We want to be sure that UWE Bristol is a good and inclusive place to work for everyone."
Rosalie Halton, co-coordinator of the UWE lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) Staff Network, says “The network is proud of this achievement and the ever-growing active group of UWE LGBT staff, but know there is still a lot more to do. Currently there is a high proportion of LGBT staff at UWE who are not supported or do not feel comfortable to be 'out' at work when they want to be; even some of the staff in the network. We would like to see more senior management role models and straight allies coming forward with actions to improve this. We hope that more staff will get involved in the network and it will continue to grow.”
Kylie Hopwood – Diversity Champion Co-ordinator at Stonewall said, "It's great to see UWE in the Top 100 but even better to see that UWE has made great progress this year. I'm from Bristol and studied at UWE so it makes me really proud.''
Ben Summerskill, Chief Executive of Stonewall, concludes, ''There's a direct correlation between employers that perform well on the Work Equality Index and the happiness of their staff. Every year we raise the bar, so it's great to see employers continuing to raise aspirations and achieve better results every year. ''
The full 2013 Workplace Equality Index is available from the Stonewall website