Policy

Equity and Diversity - Policy

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1. Purpose and Objectives

This policy provides an overarching statement of The University of Queensland's commitment to equity and diversity for staff, students and the wider community and outlines internal structures and key aspects of operations where this is to be considered. The University also has obligations under a number of legislative instruments, which are listed below.

2. Definitions, Terms, Acronyms

Accommodation or adjustment - specific measures made to enable equitable access and/or participation in employment or education for people from particular groups, for example, people from educationally disadvantaged backgrounds, or people with a disability.

3. Policy Scope/Coverage

This policy applies to all staff and students of The University of Queensland.

4. Policy Statement

The University of Queensland recognises it operates in a diverse local, national and global community, and values the diversity of its staff and student population. Ensuring equity and diversity in employment and education can bring about innovation, a more effective use of human resources and ultimately benefits the creative and intellectual life of the University and wider community.

The University is committed to providing equal opportunity of access, participation and advancement in employment and education, and developing an environment that is free of harassment and discrimination as outlined in the Prevention of Discrimination and Harassment Policy. In doing so, The University recognises that specific measures such as programs, resources and accommodations may be provided and typically gives precedence to those equity groups as defined by the Commonwealth government through its legislation and its agencies, although it will also address equity and diversity issues that fall outside of these priority areas.

The Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 (Cth) commits the University to promote the principles of equal opportunity for women and men in the workplace. The objectives of the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth) are to eliminate discrimination against persons on the grounds of sex, marital status, pregnancy or potential pregnancy, family responsibilities and breastfeeding (including the act of expressing milk). The University recognises that both men and women have family responsibilities which are diverse and include caring for children, older people, and people with disabilities. Accordingly, the University has introduced a range of initiatives to assist its staff balance work and family responsibilities.

In particular, the University recognises that there is much to be done to assist the process of reconciliation and that it is necessary for all Australians to work together towards a united Australia that respects our land and heritage of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and provides justice and equity for all. The University has identified a number of priorities that are guiding its work to this end.

5. Relevant Instruments

International Labour Organisation (ILO) Convention No. 156: Workers with Family Responsibilities.
Age Discrimination Act 2004 (Cth)
Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 (Qld);
Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth);
Race Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth);
Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth);
Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 (Cth); and
Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth).

Under the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 (Cth) non public-sector employers with 100 or more staff (relevant employers) must submit a report to the Workplace Gender Equality Agency each year. The University of Queensland, through Human Resources, provides a report to the Workplace Gender Equality Agency each year.

6. Equity and Diversity Planning

The University of Queensland Strategic Plan is the key document in the University's cycle of planning and accountability. The University's key priorities in regards to equity, diversity and inclusion are embedded in the UQ Strategic Plan and associated Operational Plans.

7. Committees

7.1 The University of Queensland has established the Senate Committee for Equity, Diversity and the Status of Women to address policy and governance relating to equity and diversity issues within The University of Queensland.

7.2 Other ad hoc equity and diversity committees have been established at the University.

7.3 While these committees are specifically related to equity and diversity, it is the responsibility of all committees within the University to be mindful of diversity issues.

Custodians
Pro-Vice-Chancellor
Vacant

Guidelines

Equity and Diversity - Guidelines

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1. Purpose and Objectives

These guidelines outline key areas for consideration in implementing the principles contained within the Equity and Diversity Policy.

2. Definitions, Terms, Acronyms

EDSW – Senate Committee for Equity, Diversity and the Status of Women

3. Guidelines Scope/Coverage

These guidelines are relevant for staff and students of the University and provide information on key aspects to be considered in regard to embedding equity and diversity in day-to-day practice.

4. Guidelines Statement

Embedding equity and diversity in all areas of the University's operations is a fundamental principle reflected in The University of Queensland Strategic Plan. This is based upon leading practice and will assist in meeting the University's goals in this area.

These guidelines are not intended to limit embedding equity and diversity within the areas outlined below but rather address areas of particular importance. Resource material and information for staff can be accessed via the Workplace Diversity and Inclusion website.

5. Key Implementation Areas

5.1 Planning

The University of Queensland Strategic Plan is the key document in the University's cycle of planning and accountability. The University's key priorities in regards to equity, diversity and inclusion are embedded in the UQ Strategic Plan and associated Operational Plans.

Reference should be made to data available on the University's Reportal and to relevant information provided on the Workplace Diversity and Inclusion website.

5.2 Committees

The Senate Committee for Equity, Diversity and the Status of Women (EDSW) addresses equity and diversity policy and governance within The University of Queensland and reports to Senate on these matters.

Other ad hoc equity and diversity committees have been established at the University.

While these committees are specifically related to equity and diversity, it is the responsibility of all committees within the University to be mindful of equity and diversity issues

Committee Chairs should endeavour to compose committees

  • with a gender balance (with at least 25% representation from the minority gender); and
  • that reflect the broad diversity of the University community (eg ethnicity, age, disability);

and ensure that they, and committee members, have attended relevant staff development (for example, recruitment and selection, equity and diversity-related programs).

When bodies external to the University are invited to nominate members to Faculty Boards and other relevant major University committees, they should be asked to note the University's interest in increasing the proportion of women on its decision-making bodies and be invited to consider nominating women with relevant experience, as well as men.

5.3 Inclusive language and images

The University requires the use of inclusive language and images. Inclusiveness ensures

  • a diversity of cultures, genders, perspectives and experiences are represented; and
  • an absence of stereotypes, discrimination or harassment.

Workplace Diversity and Inclusion has developed a Guide to Using Inclusive Language, which is available from its website. Inclusive language assists respectful communication about and between people from diverse backgrounds.

Teaching and staff development materials, publications and websites should ensure that where people are featured, there is a diversity of images (for example, gender, cultural background, age, disability) and stereotypes are avoided.

5.4 Inclusive curriculum and assessment

University staff should ensure that curriculum and teaching and learning practice is inclusive in relation to

  • teaching and learning for students; and
  • staff development.

In addition, curriculum should reflect the University's commitment to providing its graduates with ‘ethical and social understanding’:

  • an understanding of social and civic responsibility;
  • an appreciation of the philosophical and social contexts of a discipline;
  • a knowledge and respect of ethics and ethical standards in relation to a major area of study; and
  • a knowledge of other cultures and times and an appreciation of cultural diversity (see PPL 3.10.05 Graduate Attributes).

In assessment, where practical, the examiner should not be aware of the student's identity. It is recognised that there are some instances where this cannot occur (e.g. oral examinations, very small classes) (see PPL 3.10.02 Assessment).

In some instances, an alternative academic program may be required for a student with a disability (see PPL 3.50.08 Alternative Academic Arrangements for Students with a Disability). This will be incorporated within a student's Student Access Plan.

Custodians
Pro-Vice-Chancellor
Vacant
Custodians
Pro-Vice-Chancellor
Vacant