In response to the Black Lives Matter movement and the reaction around the world to the shocking police killing of George Floyd, we have considered the actions we will take to address inequalities in our work. Movements like Black Lives Matter, #MeToo and Pride remind us of how important it is to be actively inclusive and anti-prejudiced.
Even as an organisation with inclusion at its heart, we acknowledge systemic inequalities exist at Suffolk Artlink. We understand that it is our responsibility to educate ourselves and to take active steps to challenge and remove barriers both within Suffolk Artlink and the communities and networks we work in.
To further our commitment to equality we’ve committed to a series of actions we are now taking:
1. All board, staff and volunteers have read and agree with this statement and understand that working for Suffolk Artlink means a commitment to not only being not prejudiced but to being anti-prejudiced.
2. All board and staff will take part in yearly equality and / or diversity training.
3. We will work with experts in employment best practice and improve our processes to proactively increase the diversity of our team and board. This will include engaging in dialogue with diverse and underrepresented groups and through financial investment to promote opportunities.
4. We will seek out and work with black led organisations as suppliers.
5. We will co-create programmes with communities to build relationships with people who have previously been under-represented in our work.
6. When discussing new programmes we will have checks in place to ensure we do not reproduce previous biases in every phase of development.
7. We recognise the need to contextualise the received history of material we work with (in projects working with heritage items) to connect people with their wider stories.
8. Being based within a rural county, we will integrate a mixed digital and physical approach to increase and improve the access our participants have to a wider range of skilled artists. This will reduce travel barriers that many of our participants face and allow engagement with a wider pool of artists from different regions and cultures.
9. Our actions will be regularly reviewed in line with our Equality and Diversity policy by a Co-Director, Board member and Diversity Champion. This includes quarterly reviews by the Co-Director and inclusion as an agenda item at all staff and Board meetings.
10. Future actions will be developed with this approach in mind.
Our commitment for equality is outlined in our Equality and Diversity Policy: https://www.suffolkartlink.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/Equality-and-Diversity-policy-and-procedure.pdf
Charity So White defining racism: https://charitysowhite.org/defining-racism
Suffolk Artlink’s JumpstART Protest Arts film: https://vimeo.com/249510948
Stonewall link: https://www.stonewall.org.uk/category/culture-media-sport
Arts Council England’s report on equality and diversity data report: https://www.artscouncil.org.uk/publication/equality-diversity-and-creative-case-data-report-2018-19
Equity’s safe spaces statement: https://www.equity.org.uk/media/1382/safe-spaces-statement-postcard.pdf
Disability arts online: https://disabilityarts.online/
Culture Health and Wellbeing Alliance statement and references: https://www.culturehealthandwellbeing.org.uk/blacklivesmatter
Faith and culture: