BECTU is committed to equality of opportunity for everyone. We develop policies and actions that encourage and support cultural diversity and respect at work, and in wider society.
Women's conference debate Pic: Janina Struk
We pursue our policies through lobbying, agreements, practical initiatives and where necessary through more direct action.
The union's equality committees provide a means for members who are women, black and minority ethnic, disabled, lesbian, gay, bi-sexual or transgender (LGBT), to participate fully in developing policies and initiatives in these areas.
Black Members' Sub-Committee
The Black Members Sub-Committee aims to increase diversity in the workplace and at all levels of the union. It is comprised of representatives from every sector of the union.
The committee urges members to play a part in the Black Leadership Initiative which promotes increased participation and representation of black and minority ethnic (BME) members at all levels of the union. The committee also plays a proactive role working within the creative industries to address under-representation of BME workers within the workplace.
Since 2003 the Committee has worked to develop the successful diversity programme Move on Up which brokers one to one meetings between BME professionals and individual executives in the hope that the contacts made will lead to new opportunities. An independent survey of those who attended the four events run in 2006-7 indicated that 72% of respondents derived substantial benefits from their participation. The most recent Move on Up event was held on 12 May 2011.
BECTU has now joined forces with fellow unions in the Federation of Entertainment Unions and is currently working to put funding in place for an expanded programme of events across the creative industries.
The committee holds regular open evenings aimed at bringing BME workers together for networking and recruiting more members into the union. The committee can be contacted via its organiser, Janice Turner at BECTU head office.
Disabled Members' Network
BECTU also operates a Disabled Members' Network which, amongst other work, acts an important vehicle for feedback from the union's disabled members. For more information contact Tracey Hunt, administrative officer.
Equality and Diversity Committee
Issues affecting women, and LGBT members are taken up by the Equality and Diversity Committee which also puts forward policy proposals, raises awareness and works to implement trade union education for women reps. The committee sends a delegation to the Women's TUC Conference in March each year and organises a regular women's conference. The next women's conference will take place in 2012. More details here. For more information contact Kate Elliott, national official.