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Equality and Diversity

The Faculty is committed to supporting and sustaining a diverse community, and to avoiding prejudice based on race, gender (female, male or other), sexuality, class or religion (or lack of it). In these pages you can find out about what we are doing to ensure that all students, staff and visitors feel equally welcome.

The University has an active Equality and Diversity unit: their website (http://www.equality.admin.cam.ac.uk/) provides a wealth of further information, resources and contacts.

 

Contract for all in the Faculty

When you enter the Faculty building or interact with the Faculty’s members, you are implicitly entering into a contract requiring you to treat others – including, importantly, non-academic staff – with courtesy and dignity. We expect all members of our community to strive to be welcoming towards and supportive of each other. In particular, we expect each individual to engage positively with those who do not share their social identity and/or role within the Faculty.

Staff engaged in academic teaching are expected to create not only a challenging and stimulating but also an inclusive learning environment. They should avoid making assumptions about the gender, race, sexuality and/or religion of their audience, and should take reasonable precaution to avoid projecting normative or dismissive views in these matters. It is perfectly legitimate for academic staff to explore questions relating to such areas in their teaching, but they should do so with sensitivity. The Faculty of Classics believes that the expectation of such sensitivity at the discretion of teachers is preferable to the requirement to issue trigger warnings.

We expect all participants in academic discussions that take place under the Faculty’s auspices to be respectful of others at all times. This does not rule out robust and searching, and sometimes even discomfiting topics and lines of argument. It is in the nature of high-level intellectual enquiry that the moral ‘certainties’ of some will be questioned. No one, however, should seek to cause offence for offence’s sake alone.

 

Resources

The Faculty offers financial help with childcare for graduate students and staff who are required to attend Faculty-related meetings or seminars outside of normal office hours (typically 9.00-17.00 Monday-Friday). For details please contact the Faculty administrator (administrator@classics.cam.ac.uk).

For other Equality and Diversity resources please consult the relevant pages on the University’s website (http://www.equality.admin.cam.ac.uk/).

 

Athena Swan

Athena SWAN is the national kitemark for gender equality in universities and similar organisations. You can find out more about it here (http://www.ecu.ac.uk/equality-charters/athena-swan/). It was recently extended to include Humanities subjects. The Faculty of Classics is currently working towards recognition at Bronze level.

 

Harassment and Discrimination

Unfortunately, sometimes things do go wrong, and it is important to acknowledge this and where appropriate seek redress.

‘Harassment’ is any kind of unwelcome or inappropriate physical or verbal interaction, however fleeting it may appear. It can be distressing to the victim, who may react with feelings of guilt and self-blame. If you feel you have been harassed, please do not suffer in silence.

‘Discrimination’ occurs when an individual or group is denied an opportunity on the grounds of gender, race, sexuality or religion (or lack of it), or because of particular circumstances (family or caring responsibilities). It can be direct (e.g. if a decision is taken on the explicit grounds that a member of one social group is to be preferred) or it can be indirect (i.e. if a decision taken for one reason has the additional and perhaps unintended consequence of discriminating: an example might be when an important meeting is scheduled at a time when those with families are unlikely to be able to attend).

Harassment and direct discrimination are always wrong and we would encourage you to report all instances. Indirect discrimination is by definition more nebulous, and may be justifiable in certain circumstances. For example, it may be that there is a good reason to schedule certain events such as open days for potential undergraduates at times that are inconvenient for those with families or on religious holy days. Nevertheless, indirect discrimination should ideally be avoided. It is always worth letting someone in the Faculty know if you perceive it (see the following paragraph), and it may be appropriate to report it.

If you have experienced harassment or discrimination, you can get advice on how to report it and/or get support here

(http://www.hr.admin.cam.ac.uk/policies-procedures/dignity-work-policy).

We would also encourage you to discuss your experiences with (a) your line manager or the Chair of the Faculty (if you are a member of staff) or (b) your Director of Studies, a college tutor or the Faculty’s Academic Secretary for Undergraduate Affairs if you are an undergraduate student or (c) your supervisor, a college tutor or the Faculty’s Academic Secretary for Graduate Affairs if you are a graduate student. The Faculty’s Equality and Diversity officer (tjgw100@cam.ac.uk) is also always happy to discuss matters, informally or formally.

 

Contact

To contact the Faculty’s Equality and Diversity officer, please click here ().

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