The Staff Equality Network Groups are run by staff for staff and decide on their own remit and activities. In order to ensure that grass-roots equality issues are heard by senior management and addressed in relevant decision-making forums, the Network Groups are embedded in the Equality and Diversity structure at the university.
Representatives from the Network Groups are key members of the steering and working groups that guide and implement the university’s work towards relevant equality charters and other benchmarking initiatives.
The Network Groups also feed directly into the Equality and Diversity Committee through their Chairs and are represented at the University Executive Board by their Equality Champion.
Influenced by the concerns and needs of their members, the Staff Equality Network Groups have successfully:
- Overseen the introduction of gender neutral toilets across campuses
- Encouraged and advised on changes to Family Support Leave, enabling staff to take up to five days leave over a 12-month period (at the discretion of their line manager) for important family or domestic issues
- Overseen the introduction of a Carers Policy to support members of staff with caring responsibilities, which is currently being developed by Human Resources
- Encouraged the university to sign up to the Time to Change Pledge to end stigma around mental health, which is scheduled for May 2017.
The Network Groups are open to all staff and meet monthly or termly. Attending Network Group meetings is recognised by the University Executive Board as core university business.