Like many charities we have been opening our eyes to structural racism, bias and discrimination in our society, our organisation and the wider charity sector.
Back in June, in response to the Black Lives Matter movement, St Christopher’s committed to ensuring we are a just and equal organisation for staff and young people of all races. Since then, our Race Matters Group has been exploring areas where St Christopher’s can make changes to benefit everyone who makes up our charity.
Race Matters is composed of employees from across the service types and regions that we operate in. The group has identified five priority areas to work on:
For example, one topic of discussion has focused on how the organisation has assessed the resources we have to meet the health and wellbeing of staff and the young people we care for in the knowledge of how racism impacts on some groups. This includes how we engage and collaborate with external services and which of those services are best placed to meet the needs of our workforce and young people.
The group has also looked at the appropriateness and context of terminology used within the organisation. As everyone offers a unique perspective on these issues they are not simple problems that can be solved, so it is essential to raise awareness and promote learning around these difficult topics.
As an organisation we are encouraging colleagues to submit their equality and diversity data. This will provide an overall picture of our workforce so that we can look through different cultural lenses, be more targeted and create a stronger sense of belonging.
Members are keen to ensure these changes are not short-term but ones that will benefit employees and young people long into the future. This means acting with thought and consideration and commitment to facilitating change which will last the test of time.
Chief Executive Jonathan Whalley said: “Thank you to our colleagues for establishing this group and being so open about their experiences. This work will not be easy or a quick fix, but is hugely important in ensuring all St Christopher’s staff and young people feel valued and equal.”
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