Work that happened over the last year to make Brunel an even better place to be an LGBT staff member – a lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender person – has resulted in a large leap up Stonewall's workplace index rankings.
Stonewall is a major UK charity championing the rights of LGBT people, and the annual league table helps demonstrate to prospective staff that organisations are an attractive place to work, with the 'top 100' accolade particularly coveted.
In Stonewall's 2020 rankings, published on 30 January, Brunel was ranked 296th out of 503 organisations, representing a rise of 131 places since our first submission last year.
Improvements made at the University include updated family-friendly policies, staff and student participation at Pride in London, profiles of prominent staff members to act as role models, and a re-invigorated LGBT+ Staff Network that's been increasingly active.
Dr Mike Thomas, the LGBT+ Staff Network Co-Ordinator, added: "This is great news. The LGBT+ Staff Network aims to help Brunel become more inclusive, through feeding in to policy development, raising awareness of LGBT+ issues to senior leadership, providing advocacy and support – and much more.
"We’ve made a good start in improving our position on LGBT+ equality at Brunel. But we still have a long way to go. For example, LGBT+ visibility on campus is still very low at Brunel in comparison to other universities. We also know that LGBT+ staff and students report significantly lower satisfaction about working or studying at here than other staff/students. It's clear that we have some way to go before we can compete with those in the top 100, but we will work with HR and others to analyse Stonewall's feedback and to create an action plan."
Yinka Iwu – HR's Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Business Partner, who coordinated the University's application – commented: "I am very pleased with the significant progress that we have made, and I would like to thank my colleagues from across the University for all their hard work in making this happen.
"We know that there is more work to be done, but this puts us in a positive position for future improvements."