Cragg lab pledge of support to BLM movement and commitment to inclusivity
maybe we just go about it like our science - accept a high intrinsic failure rate, but do it anyway, create structure for feedback, repeat. #BlackLivesMatter - @seemaychou
You are expected not the exception
As a lab and community, we pledge to be considerate and welcoming of all people, regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity and disability or neurodivergence. We will acknowledge societal injustices and how these impact us personally and professionally. This is an ongoing working document that requires thought and reflection. Due to the lack of representation of Black scientists in our group and given the social injustices surrounding Black people to date, this document aims to make future Black colleagues welcome, included and valued. It is also intended to promote inclusivity of all under-represented groups.
- I will not give the “benefit of the doubt” when it comes to racist, prejudiced or derogatory comments.
- I am committed to be ANTI-RACIST even if it makes me and those around me uncomfortable. This discomfort IS NOT to be dispersed by humour. I will not minimise my pain/discomfort at other people’s expense.
- Acknowledge white privilege. Acknowledge male privilege. Acknowledge heteronormative privilege. Acknowledge how privileges can interact. Acknowledge unconscious and conscious biases.
- I will remember people are individuals. I will not expect an individual to be a spokesperson for a whole minority community or that views are homogenous.
- I will educate myself. I will read. I will watch. I will accept criticism and act upon it without self-pity.
- I will not request minoritised academics to teach me about their experience for free. Their time and emotional energy are precious. This issue is particularly relevant to Black members of our community due to their extreme lack of representation.
- I will seek out minoritised people’s accomplishments in my field and promote their inclusion as well as greater diversity at events in my field. Please submit excellent scientists from diverse backgrounds for “Head of Department (HOD)” and “named departmental lectures (e.g Marianne Fillenz lecture)” (Steph can field these on your behalf or directly to Heidi DeWet (named lecture) or Armin Lak (HOD)
- I will remember that it is OK to not be OK. When times are hard for personal and societal reasons, productivity cannot be maintained without risk to our mental health.
- I will be mindful of obstacles that may incumber members of our community with disabilities; and when noticed act to improve their ability to work independently e.g. ensuring step-free access
- I will embrace neurodiversity, and understand that certain “social norms” are more difficult for some people e.g maintaining eye-contact or being seated for a meeting. We will aim to be accommodating so all members of our community can work optimally together.
- We will support each other’s science with robust critique but with empathy, passion and pursuit of a common goal.
- I will be aware of how the University of Oxford’s colonial history can impact on Black and other ethnicities’ view of the university, including our place within it. I will listen, learn and support their voices within the University.
- For now: listen, learn, advocate. BUT this is not an excuse for future inaction. Time to implement real change.
We are far more united and have far more in common than that which divides us. - Jo Cox MP
This pledge is signed by all Cragg lab members and displayed in the lab, and all new members are asked to sign