Introduction to Anti-Racism Report and Response
AUBSU have been working to hold the university and ourselves accountable.
In our role as your Students’ Union, we aim to be as transparent and open with our actions, releasing this report allows for conversation and understanding of the anti-racism work we have been pushing and advocating for within AUB. In writing this report, we documented aspects of the lived experiences which had not previously been formally documented and listened to at AUB. This introduction is to our report, and the formal response from the university and their action plan moving forward.
This year within the Union, AUBSU have been:
Championing marginalised voices in the conversation
Creating safe spaces for these voices and supporting them
Funding liberation campaigns and projects
Developing additional and necessary training
Paying external voices to identify and discuss where we can improve to best support all our stakeholders
Creating the Anti-Racism Report and Focus Groups
In our role as Students’ Union, we have been holding the university accountable for their actions on anti-racism and equality and diversity. In light of the global conscience awakened last summer during the Black Lives Matter protests, the university made a list of commitments. As a follow up, the Students’ Union President, with the support of the AUBSU team wrote an Anti-Racism Report. This report would not have been possible without the labour and bravery of students, alumni, and staff willing to share their experiences, and allowing us to document some of the lived experiences of our stakeholders at AUB.
The Union spoke to approximately 30 participants from different areas of the university, and alumni. We would like to collect more in-depth information and capture more of the lived experience; this requires funding to pay and support those providing the emotional labour. The Union hopes that the university will be willing to fund this research in the near future, and that further research can allow AUB to fully understand the scope of racism at the university, as this report is only the tip of iceberg.
We would like to acknowledge the use of BAME data collections in the university’s response, and its comparison to white student datapoints. AUBSU acknowledge the vast amount of differing lived experiences of individuals and identities within the BAME acronym. We are lobbying the university to collect more accurate demographic data, and to share this with AUBSU to improve representation, campaigns, and provision. Using the term BAME incorrectly lumps lots of very different lived experiences together without understanding each of them in their variation of concerns, issues and needs.
We once again thank the writer and participants of this report for allowing the Union to document their experiences in this report. This report will be used to continue to progress the anti-racism agenda at AUB, and in the HE Sector as a proactive tool to create change.