On Monday 20th March 2023 the Higher Education Authority (HEA) launched the Anti-Racism Principles for Irish Higher Education Institutions which aim to harness the power that Irish Higher education institutions (HEIs) have as leaders of positive change in society to challenge racism and race inequality.
On Friday 23rd June 2023 President Kerstin Mey had the opportunity to publicly sign the Anti-Racism Principles with Dr Jennie Rothwell and Laura Austin of the HEA here in UL. See below University of Limerick signed Anti-Racism Principles.
October 2021 saw the publication of the report from the HEA survey on Race Equality in the Higher Education Sector. The evidence gathered by the survey and the analysis and consideration of the issues raised in this report, along with the recommendations, provide a basis for universities to further develop policies and actions to address race inequality in higher education.
One such action, is the roll out by the eight IUA universities, of an online training programme Let’s Talk About Race in the Higher Education Sector. This course for staff and students is a key initiative in building the intercultural understanding and competence required to achieve systemic change.
This specifically commissioned module will complement the existing race awareness and education activities that we are undertaking here in UL, including our Ethnic Diversity Forum (EDF). Dr Yoga Nathan (Senior Lecturer in the School of Medicine) and Mamobo Ogoru (PhD student) are both chair and co-chair of this Forum. The EDF is a sub-group of the Human Rights – EDI Steering Committee and will lead UL’s ongoing efforts to advance inclusion on campus. The purpose of the Forum is to understand and advocate for a positive campus climate in relation to ethnicity, equality, diversity and inclusion, and to make recommendations and progress actions that aim to make UL an equitable, safe and respectful work and study environment for all.
The HEA report is also an important educational resource in highlighting the fact that racism is not just about overtly racist actions such as racial harassment and hate crime, which unfortunately are still a problem in our society and regrettably are on the rise (Irish Network Against Racism 2020 report).
I encourage all staff and students to read the Race Equality Report and to undertake the Let’s Talk About Race in the Higher Education Sector programme.
Professor Kerstin Mey
Uachtarán / President
Oifig an Uachtaráin / Office of the President
Ollscoil Luimnigh / University of Limerick
Ethnic Diversity Forum