Marking Stephen Lawrence Day – 22 April
Today is Stephen Lawrence Day, marking the anniversary of Stephen’s brutal murder in 1993.
With the issue of racial crime tragically in the news again, it is a moment for us as a university to reflect on the work we are doing, but the further work we still need to do.
The University Executive Board, jointly with the BSU, recently took part in our 2nd anti-racist forum with students, listening to their experiences of race inequality and injustice. We’re continuing to work at pace and will shortly be publicly sharing the next steps and pledges that we will make following the forum. But this is not a quick fix – it is part of an ongoing, long-term commitment to make sure our university becomes genuinely inclusive and actively anti-racist in practice as well as intention.
We recognise that racism and racial inequalities are deeply rooted within society and so too within higher education institutions, including our own. You can read more about the work we’re undertaking as part of our Race Equality Charter Action Plan, which commits us to addressing inequalities, with the University Executive Board and Board of Governors accountable.
This includes decolonialising the curriculum to challenge how we teach; addressing the gap we know exists in the proportional number of 1st and 2:1 degrees awarded to students from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds when compared to students from White backgrounds; and having a clear policy and statement on Reporting racial discrimination and harassment.
But we know we have much more to do – and we will do it. We will keep working in partnership with students and the BSU to make the University of Brighton a place where everyone can feel welcome, realise their potential, and be themselves.
Stay safe, stay well.
Professor Debra Humphris