Oxford University is unequivocal in its opposition to racism and discrimination, and we are committed to addressing systemic racism within our own community.
The collegiate University already carries out a wide range of activities to tackle racism, many of which are outlined in its comprehensive action plan, developed for its application to the Race Equality Charter in 2018. Staff and students across the University have since responded to the increased focus on these issues in 2020 to take a range of further actions.
The Race Equality Task Force was announced in the Vice-Chancellor’s Oration in October 2020 as part of a commitment to accelerating action in this area. At the Oration, Professor Louise Richardson spoke of a new:
University wide task force convened to engage, to listen, to share ideas and together to make recommendations for ways that we can address the under-representation of racial minorities at all levels – especially the most senior levels – within the university.
The purpose of the Task Force is to advance racial equality across the collegiate University of Oxford, and to ensure that all people and perspectives are valued and that, in practice, opportunities are open to all people without racial discrimination. We will work actively to be antiracist at all levels, to articulate existing barriers, and to identify what can be done by everyone in the collegiate University, especially its leaders, to dismantle those barriers. We will focus on the curriculum and student experience; recruitment and career progression for staff; the promotion of an inclusive and supportive institutional culture; and ensuring our actions are grounded in and guided by the latest research. The Task Force will develop a University-wide strategy and business plan to identify the specific steps and practices which are needed to accelerate change and promote racial equality across the collegiate University of Oxford, and will recommend a sustainable and resourced plan for adoption by Council.