Leaders of 36 VCSE organisations sign statement pledging to dismantle racism in the sector
Leaders from 36 national VCSE umbrella bodies, have signed a joint statement on the problem of race inequality in society and the sector and the impact this has on staff, volunteers and the communities that they serve.
The statement says that systemic racism and discrimination in the UK directly and indirectly leads to poorer life chances, deeper health inequalities and greater risks being carried within BAME communities, and that those challenges are exacerbated when the sector fails to address its own problems of race inequality.
The statement commits signatories to act on and be accountable for implementing the report’s personal, organisational and collective recommendations.
The statement follows the publication of ‘Home Truths: Undoing racism and delivering real diversity in the charity sector,’ by Voice4Change and ACEVO.
The report covers many aspects of racism as it is evidenced in the sector – from the systemic and individualised barriers experienced by BAME staff to a failure to effectively integrate race equity goals into sector’s work.
In particular, it states that the group will: “… engage actively with the recommendations for organisational policy, in the context of our individual organisations. And as leaders of national infrastructure bodies we commit to working together to engage with the recommendations made for the sector collectively.”
The group has committed to a joint work plan and will regularly report on progress; organisations which would like to work with them on this have been encouraged to get in touch.
The statement concludes:
“As leaders of infrastructure bodies we also must work with our members and networks to help them do the same – and we must learn from the experience of our members and networks where they are ahead of us on this agenda.
“We commit ourselves to move forward together, to listen and to learn, to take action jointly and individually, to effect change and to be held accountable for delivering change.
“We know we have much more to do. For the sake of our sector and our communities, charities and social change organisations are #NeverMoreNeeded, and we need to get this right.”