Anti-racism actions update
In June 2020, we published a statement about our anti-racist actions and committed to being transparent about that process by publishing updates every six months. Following our blog in November 2020, this is an update on our recent work, which has taken longer than anticipated to complete:
Anti-Racism policy and action plan
We completed a series of Anti-Racism training sessions with Mel Larsen and Ishreen Bradley, which ran from November 2019 until January 2021. Staff have been working in Race Resolutions groups with focused areas, and they’ve created an action plan and goals that form the basis of our Anti-Racism policy and action plan, which you can read here.
Review of our Artist Support programme
Our Artist Support Producers conducted an in-depth 6 month review of how we support artists and began to understand the visible and invisible barriers that we have created which have excluded artists historically. We went to artists with specific questions and listened to the intelligence and insight offered. We looked at the data we collect and what we offer, and reviewed the language we use. In response to this review, amidst other things, we relaunched what was the advisory service as Creative Support Sessions, our one-to-one support offering for working in contemporary performance at any stage of their career. This aimed to eliminate hierarchy and frame the support we offer not as expert advice but rather as a space held for creative conversations around process and practice.
Equal Opportunities monitoring forms
Our Artist Support Producers also reviewed the questions we asked people who engaged with our services, including our Equal Opportunities monitoring form. We collect this data to see if we’re achieving what we’ve set out to do, but we noticed that not many people were actually filling in the form.
In the review, the Artist Support Producers heard that many people do not feel seen in the standard form template. In response, they created a new version of the form, with additional questions, more options to self-describe and an invitation to feedback so that we continue to improve how this form represents the people we engage with. This new form was discussed with staff and launched in March 2021.
In October 2021, we’ll monitor the data we collect and review the feedback to understand the impact of the new version, and to evolve the form accordingly. The review of our Equal Opportunities Monitoring form has prompted a wider staff discussion and review of the language we use to talk about ethnicity and cultural heritage, which will inform our communications planning.
Forming an Accountability Committee
We have established an Accountability Committee of board, staff and artists, which is chaired by our trustee Marcia Van-Loo. The Accountability Committee creates a safe, carefully-facilitated space to uphold our policies and ensure any discrimination that may arise within the organisation is managed with sensitivity, integrity and accountability. The Accountability Committee has terms of reference, an initial membership of the two Directors and three trustees (including Marcia), and has met three times to clarify its function and role.
We remain committed to embedding anti-racism in our recruitment and retention processes. The recruitment process for all posts ensures that at least one person of colour is on each interview panel, and we are continuing to seek out new channels to extend the circulation of all job adverts to more diverse networks. We are recruiting a People, Culture and Change Manager to help us build a more inclusive organisational culture where all staff flourish and make strategic shifts to our ways of working, HR systems, policies and procedures.
We have recruited new Trustees (you can read about them here) so that our leadership better reflects the communities we serve, in line with our aim for at least 40% of our Trustees to be people of colour by July 2021.
We are listening and welcoming your feedback. Please contact us via email and you can also arrange a call to discuss any of the above:
Deborah Chadbourn, Executive Director, firstname.lastname@example.org
Róise Goan, Artistic Director, email@example.com