Dr Tony Sewell CBE, Jatin Haria, and Sandra Kerr CBE have been appointed as independent expert advisors to Universities UK (UUK) as the higher education sector seeks to redouble efforts to prevent and respond to racial harassment and hate crime.
UUK has established a taskforce looking at racial harassment experienced by both staff and students, which will develop new guidance for the sector and make recommendations for addressing the challenges in this area.
Professor Julia Buckingham, the President of UUK and Vice-Chancellor of Brunel University London, announced in the autumn that independent external advisors would be sought to strengthen the work of the group, and today confirmed the three appointments.
Delivering the keynote address at today’s conference ‘Tackling violence, harassment and hate incidents’ in London, Professor Buckingham welcomed:
Dr Tony Sewell, Fellow of UCL, Senior Research Fellow for Demography, Immigration, and Integration at Policy Exchange and the CEO of the charity Generating Genius.
Jatin Haria, Executive Director at the Coalition for Racial Equality and Rights in Scotland, who also worked on the Scottish Government’s Race Equality Framework.
Sandra Kerr, the Race Equality Director of Business in the Community, who was instrumental in developing the Race at Work Charter.
Within her speech, Professor Buckingham also called upon university leaders to redouble their efforts to tackle harassment and hate crime more widely, emphasising that strategic ownership for this agenda should sit at the most senior level within institutions.
Professor Buckingham said:
“If we are to tackle these issues effectively then senior leaders –myself, and the other 136 members of Universities UK – must embed, expand and effect the further change that is necessary.
“That means an ongoing commitment to taking a strategic and joined-up approach, to culture change and to scrutiny and accountability.”
In a measure of the collective importance being placed on the issue of tackling harassment, three other university vice-chancellors also addressed the event, which brings together higher education staff, stakeholders and student representatives annually.
- Professor Buckingham’s full speech is available here: Julia Buckingham Advance HE Value Speech.pdf
Universities UK is the collective voice of 137 universities in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Its mission is to create the conditions for UK universities to be the best in the world; maximising their positive impact locally, nationally and globally. Universities UK acts on behalf of universities, represented by their heads of institution. Visit: www.universitiesuk.ac.uk
- Tony Sewell CBE is a Fellow of UCL, a Senior Research Fellow for Demography, Immigration, and Integration at Policy Exchange and is the CEO of the charity Generating Genius, which among its many achievements has progressed significant work on raising black boys’ attainment.
- Sandra Kerr CBE is the Race Equality Director of Business in the Community and was instrumental in developing the Race at Work Charter.
- Jatin Haria is Executive Director at the Coalition for Racial Equality and Rights in Scotland. Jatin worked on the Scottish Government’s Race Equality Framework and has previously served on the Commission for Racial Equality Scotland Advisory Board and the Scottish Executive's Race Equality Advisory Forum.