University recognised by equality index

The University of Sheffield has been recognised for its support for staff after being ranked in the top 100 Stonewall Workplace Equality Index

Sheffield was placed 82nd out of almost 400 organisations across the UK in the nationally recognised league table, which benchmarks organisations according to their support provisions for Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual (LGB) staff.

This year the University rose 24 places and was highlighted as a fully inclusive community to work with staff and students endorsing the institution as a supportive working environment.

Andrew Dodman, director of human resources at the University of Sheffield, said: “I am delighted that we have been named as a Top 100 employer by Stonewall. Our vision is to create a remarkable place to work, and LGBT equality is a key aspect of this. Being in the Top 100 serves to both acknowledge our efforts, and provides a strong platform for us to continue with this really important work.’

The University of Sheffield aims to support people, regardless of their sexual orientation or any other equality characteristic, to work together to create and be part of an all-encompassing university community.

Over the past 12 months an innovative collaboration of staff across the university, including the LGBT staff and student networks, have launched a number of pioneering initiatives such as Storying LGBT@TUoS. The project began as a partnership between the LGBT Staff Network and the LGBT Student Committee to create a film documenting the experiences of LGBT students and staff at the University.

In the inspirational film lecturers, staff and students answered questions such as ‘What was it like coming out?’ and ‘What is it like being out and studying or working at the University?’ in the hope that it will provide people with an understanding of the challenges they faced and overcame and to help new and prospective students and staff gain an insight into the outer LGBT community. 

The film was showcased during LGBT History month when University of Sheffield Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Keith Burnett, paid tribute to those who appeared in the film and emphasised the importance of sharing and celebrating individual stories.

In July the University proudly flew the Rainbow Flag outside Firth Court in recognition of Sheffield Pride. This significant mark of support coincided with the institutions fourth consecutive sponsorship of Pride as part of its community engagement work.

Matthew Mears, acting chair of the LGBT Staff Network said: ‘The University, through its Equality and Diversity teams and the staff network, has been making great strides with LGBT equality in the workplace and it is fantastic that Stonewall has recognised this by ranking us in the top 100 employers in the UK.

“I’m proud to be a member of staff here and look forward to seeing what new projects the University has in store!’