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EDI: a rough guide for students

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Dominik Jackson-Cole

on 27 October 2016

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Transcript of EDI: a rough guide for students


Equality, Diversity and Inclusion at Kingston University
a rough guide for students
Why bother with Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI)?
Do you have at least one of the following characteristics:
mother tongue?
sexual orientation?
This online resource will outline:

how our personal characteristics (like age, gender, ethnicity, etc.) can affect how we interact with one another

what legal protections you have against being discriminated

what Kingston University does to fight injustice and recognise, promote and celebrate EDI values.

Of course you do!
Then you may be at risk of being discriminated... and that doesn't feel nice, to say the least.
Still unconvinced?...

Legal stuff:
You are protected by the provision of the Equality Act 2010, which was set up to:

eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation
advance equality of opportunity between different groups
foster good relations between different groups

The Equality Act 2010 also named nine protected characteristics, which are...




Sexual Orientation
Age refers to a person belonging to a particular age (such as 32-year-olds) or range of ages (such as 18–30-year-olds).

Age discrimination is not confined to older people, e.g. perceptions about young people may influence recruitment decisions.
Age also applies to the provision of services, older people cannot be barred from signing up to internet services on the basis that they are not tech-savvy

Over 40% of KU students are mature. Find out what services for mature students are available at KU:


Why bother with EDI?
Because employers want it!
Several employer surveys confirm that the key skills sought after are:
communication skills
teamwork, and
analytical thinking.

Paying attention to diversity is crucial to developing all of the above skills!
Working in diverse teams and communicating effectively to various audiences
requires emotional and cultural intelligence which come from understanding people who are different from you.
Emotional Intelligence
Controlling emotions:
a lesson from Angry Birds
Cultural intelligence
So read (and watch) on to find out more!
(click on play to watch the videos)

(this is so much more than just a Prezi!)
View the presentation in full-screen mode and/or allow pop-ups;
Use arrows to move through the presentation: right (forward), left (backwards), down (zoom out)
You can also use your mouse to zoom in/out by clicking on different areas.
There are videos so you may need to use headphones and/or enable sound
A person has a disability if they have a mental or physical impairment that has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on their ability to perform normal day-to-day activities.

More information on support for students with disability and/or dyslexia:
Some examples can include: progressive conditions like cystic fibrosis, depression, diabetes and dyslexia, ADHD, HIV, cancer or multiple sclerosis, and many many others.
KU subscribes to the
social model of disability

What's that?

The social model of disability says that disability is caused by the way society is organised, rather than by a person's impairment or difference (Scope.org).

What is the social model of disability?
#EndTheAwkward: Sex, dating and relationships
Gender reassignment refers to those who are proposing to undergo, are undergoing, or have undergone a process (or part of a process) for the purpose of reassigning their sex by changing physiological or other attributes of sex. Terms used to describe a person are ‘trans’ or ‘transgender’.
A trans student's or staff member’s appearance, voice or way of dressing may change as they explore their identity. Drawing attention to it, or asking personal questions, may be seen as intrusive, inappropriate or disrespectful.
‘Trans’ is a diverse spectrum that does not simply involve male to female or female to male, but a range of in-between positions that do not fall into stereotypes. Ideas about ’a man trapped in a woman's body' are often outdated and over-simplistic as are many depictions of trans people on TV and in films.
Be prepared to ask politely how someone identifies themselves, and what pronouns they prefer (he/she/them)– and respect their position.
It is just as rude to ask a trans person about their genitals (or breasts) as it would be to ask a ‘cis’ (non-trans) person.

Heard of Caitlyn Jenner?
Bruce Jenner was a famous American olympian and part of the Kardashians family when he came out as transgender, named Caitlyn. The world has welcomed her with open arms... but there's more to the story...
Sexist coverage on Caitlyn Jenner
Marriage is defined as a 'union between a man and a woman‘ or, as of 2013, same-sex couples. Same-sex couples can also have their relationships legally recognised as 'civil partnerships'. Civil partners must be treated the same as married couples on a wide range of legal matters.

The Equality Act only protects people who are married or in a civil partnership from unlawful discrimination. It does not protect people who are single, divorced, widowed or have dissolved their civil partnerships. In addition, protection is only afforded in employment, and not in education or the provision of goods and services. Being married or in a civil partnership is therefore not a protected characteristic for the further and higher education institution provisions.
Pregnancy relates to the pre-birth period, maternity refers specifically to that time after the birth.

The University has developed a
pregnancy policy for students
to ensure that they are supported appropriately in work or study, before and after having a baby:

This is, of course, linked to maternity leave in an employment context. In a non-work context, protection against maternity discrimination covers the 26 weeks following giving birth, and includes treating a woman unfavourably because she is breastfeeding which may give rise to a claim of sex discrimination. The Equality Act strengthens legal protection to students during pregnancy and maternity and prohibits discrimination on these grounds.
Race includes a person’s colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin.

Kingston is one of the most diverse universities in the country with over 50% of its students and 14% of staff identifying as 'home' BME (Black and Minority Ethnic).
On top of these numbers 11% of students and 15% of staff are classified as international.
There are many definitions of racism. One of them define it as consisting of ideologies and practices that seek to justify, or cause, the unequal distribution of privileges, rights or goods among different racial groups (Wikipedia).
Racism: further definitions
Racism is a complex phenomenon. Here's one of the classifications of different levels of racism (based on Moving Race Forward, 2014):

Individual Level

Internalised racism
– private attitudes and prejudices based on race, this might include internalised feelings of superiority and entitlement to privilege by white people, or inferiority and oppression by ethnic minorities.

Interpersonal racism
– acts of racism occurring when people of different ethnic backgrounds interact; this is the closest term to the traditional, narrow definition of racism, which includes hate crimes, racial slurs and violence.

Systemic Level

Institutional racism
– discriminatory practices and polices within institutions which produce unequal outcomes for people of different ethnicities, for example a corporation where most BMEs concentrate in low-rank jobs, and are underrepresented or absent from senior level jobs.

Structural racism
– racial bias across the whole spectrum of the society, which is a result of the combined effects of social, historical, cultural, ideological, and political factors that disadvantage BMEs. For example, the compounded effects of BMEs concentrating in poorer neighbourhoods and worse performing schools, negative representations of BMEs in the media, and suspicious treatment of BMEs during everyday activities (e.g. shopping, travelling, working).

Racism works in many different ways, which are much more subtle than slurs or physical violence but equally, if not more damaging, for example:
In one study in the UK job candidates from BME backgrounds had to send 74% more applications than similarly qualified and experienced White candidates to achieve the same number of job-interview invitations (Wood,
et al.
, 2009).
Racist behaviours have become so normalised that we don't realise how ridiculous they are until we reverse the rhetoric.
Black people...
Asian people...
... said the stuff White people say.
WARNING: Strong language!
Black Caribbean students are less likely than their White counterparts to be entered into higher tiers of mathematics and science GCSE examinations, despite having the same prior attainment record (Strand, 2011).
Religion is an organised system of believes. For the purposes of the Equality Act 2010 protections also include people with no religion. Belief means any religious and philosophical belief, including lack of belief (e.g. Atheism). Generally, a belief should affect your life choices, or the way you live, for it to be included in the definition.
Both our student and staff bodies are very diverse and where possible timetables are designed with different religious festivals in mind, but due to multitudes of events it is not always possible to ensure timetabling without a clash.

If religious observance requires you to be absent during lectures, you must give reasonable notice to the lecturer.

If a clash occurs with an examination, you should follow the ‘Mitigating Circumstances’ procedure:
Conflicts of Equality
Faith and Spirituality Service
offers spirituality, faith and pastoral support for all students and staff:
In 2008 Christian hotel owners in Cornwall banned a gay couple from staying at their establishment. Their double bedroom policy stated that the rooms were available only for heterosexual married couples. The gay couple sued the hoteliers.

The hotel owners argued they did not discriminate against sexuality but sexual practices (married or unmarried couple) and that they would not allow an unmarried heterosexual couple to stay either, as it was against their faith.

However, when the incident happened there was no marriage equality in the UK, so a gay couple could not comply with the policy as they could not marry. Therefore this policy was in fact homophobic. Christian hotel owners lost the case and the appeal at the Supreme Court.
This is one of very common examples of conflicts within equality law, whereby religious believes are in tension with LGBT+ rights.

This refers to being a man or woman. Under the law - contrary to popular belief - men have as much protection as women with regard to being disadvantaged on the grounds of their sex.
Kingston runs a mentoring scheme for female students studying in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths or the Built Environment. Beyond Barriers is advertised at the start of each academic year.

What if men and women were asked the same questions?
Refers to a person's sexual attraction towards their own sex, the opposite sex or to both sexes.
You can join Kingston University LGBT society:
Find out more about current issues and affairs of the LGBT+ community in Kingston:
Now you know the definitions...
...so what?!
Issues of equality are not straightforward.
As shown with the example of Caitlyn Jenner, they often overlap. Imagine what barriers and stigma our society could put on a Black Muslim lesbian trans woman in a wheelchair. This is called
- and refers to the situation where multiple categories of difference (age, gender, race, etc.) work together to advantage or disadvantage an individual or a group.
Intersectionality and privilege
Unconscious Bias
As the name suggests it is a bias we are not aware of; it is the quick judgement of people and situations, which is affected by our background, experiences and cultural environment.
Most common form of unconscious bias is liking people who are similar to us, e.g. Black males tend to make mono-racial friend groups... conversely so do White males, but in these cases they are not accused of racial segregation.
Other types of bias come from what the society and culture perceive as successful.
Are men better instrumentalists?
By using blind orchestra auditions
this myth was debunked!
Are tall people more competent?
No, but they sure are more successful!
We started this resource by asking if you had age, gender, ethnicity, sexuality, etc. All these categories of difference will influence how you see the world, and how the world sees you.
Being a part of a minority (or a minoritised group) may be a powerful tool to help you view the world through the eyes of others. But just because you have one of the protected characteristics does not guarantee you will understand other minority groups. That requires empathy.
For example, in the US debate on marriage equality many interracial married couples expressed their opposition to the idea of marriage equality for homosexual couples, despite the fact that interracial marriage was illegal in the States until as late as 1967!
Equally, being gay does not guarantee being able to view other disadvantaging factors. LGBT+ community is dominated by white gay males, who are the main represented group in the media (TV, films, posters, models, cannon of beauty), the voices of others within the community, like ethnic minorities, lesbians, bisexuals or transgender people are often marginalised.
How we see the world
according to the law there are
nine protected characteristics
(age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion and belief, sex, and sexual orientation)

the relationships between the protected characteristics are never easy, but
helps us understand how multiple categories of difference can (dis)advantage individuals.

the way we see and experience the world, and how others see and treat us depends on our
; a lot of
is needed to see the world through others' eyes

we all have
unconscious biases
, and we have to recognise our own practices first to change them.
Is your face trustworthy?
Our brains judge people before we realise it.
Homosexuality is becoming more and more accepted in the Western societies, however it is still a big taboo in professional sports. See the reactions to Michael Sam - who came out as gay before being drafted to the NFL...
Michael Sam coming out
Michael Sam kissing boyfriend on ESPN
What have you learnt?
Kingston support
throughout the presentation we have given you links to different policies, websites and groups within the university that can offer support. Here they are again:
Warning: Strong language
deadline: 27th Sept 2015
Watch the videos!
... but there's more!
This resource (Rough Guide) is part of the
Academic Multicultural and Diversity Programme

which also consists of in-curriculum workshops, a paid 'change project' and simulation workshops. You can find more information about it on the AMDP site:

The AMDP is part of the Centre for Graduate Excellence.

Completing at least one of the non-compulsory elements of AMDP will earn you 5 points towards your Kingston award!
Services for mature students:

Support for students with disability and dyslexia:

Pregnancy policy for students:

Mitigating circumstances policy:

Faith and Spirituality services:

LGBT Society:

Thinking of moving abroad?
Harassment is an unwanted behaviour that has the purpose or effect of violating a person's dignity or creates a degrading, humiliating, hostile, intimidating or offensive environment. It may refer to any personal characteristic of the individual, and may be persistent or an isolated incident.

patronising language
excessive criticism
selective application of the rules
exclusion or isolation

Harassing a Muslim

(it's over 9 min... so a bit long - but watch some)
Shopping while Black.
Another case of racial harassment
How to (almost) deal with sexual harassment
Different countries will have different provisions against discrimination - it's worth doing your research!
Migrant Integration Policy Index

how easy it is to integrate for a migrant in another country
Homosexuality is illegal in 79 countries
Kingston University Student Union
has several faith based societies, they can be found here:
... confirm you completed the Rough Guide (you'll need to follow this link and fill in the information in order to receive Kingston Award points):
And last but not least...
Why bother? Employability and diversity
Your protected characteristics
(with loads of interesting videos and stories)

Other Issues: Harassment, unconscious bias, intersectionality
What's in it for me? Get Kingston Award points and more!
: all the links are listed again at the end of the presentation - so you don't get distracted.
Sustainable development, cultural diversity, awareness and empathy
To meet the challenges of our times (Sustainable Development Goals), we must make the most of the world’s cultural diversity adopting an inclusive approach in order to foster development and social cohesion.
Sustainability and the world
[you may need to click a few times on the link - it's a bit temperamental]
Full transcript