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Race Equality


Race Equality

Racial equality occurs when institutions give equal opportunity to people of all races. Our university focuses on people from all over globally.

Race Equality Charter (REC)

As a values based organisation, with EDI at the heart of our strategy, Newcastle University is committed to being actively anti-racist. In line with this, the University has been awarded a Race Equality Charter (REC) Bronze Award by Advance HE in recognition of its work towards tackling race inequality in higher education.

Advance HE’s REC was set up to improve the representation, experience, progression and success of racially minoritised colleagues and students within higher education. It is based on five principles and provides a rigorous and robust framework through which institutions work to critically reflect and act on institutional and cultural barriers. In applying to be part of the REC, our University commits to adopting these principles within policies, practices, action plans and culture.

The Race Equality Charter is first and foremost a vehicle and a foundation on which we can start to work towards being a more equitable institution: an institution where colleagues are given the opportunity and the confidence to challenge systems, processes and practices that perpetuate systemic racism and racial inequality.

REC Action Plan and Implementation

Underlying our REC application is an action plan that provides a framework to guide our actions around race equality for the period of 2022/23 – 2026/27. See the Full REC Application and Action Plan.

Our key overarching objectives identified in our REC Action Plan are:

  • To increase representation from ethnically minoritised groups in colleague and student cohorts and to position Newcastle University as an employer and academic institution of choice
  • To create ‘safe’ and ‘brave’ spaces for belonging through both physical and conceptual spaces, as well as enhancing the colleague and student experiences through effective engagement, communication and partnerships
  • To focus on career development opportunities for colleagues, by focussing on the pipeline and the lack of representation from ethnically minoritised groups in senior positions
  • To introduce effective reporting tools and training mechanisms to empower and enable colleagues and students to stand up to and report racial hate crime
  • To articulate the multiplicity of perspectives through effective communication and consultation and use these authentic voices and lived experiences as a key driver for change
  • To address barriers and sustain change by embedding the principles of race equality in existing structures, processes, and committees, therefore mitigating disproportionate impacts for those belonging to ethnically minoritised groups.

Implementing our REC Action Plan

The implementation of our REC Action Plan will be driven by our REC Implementation and Action Group (IAG), which will be made up of key stakeholders who will lead various aspects of the plan. The group will be Chaired by the Professor Judith Rankin, Dean of EDI, and co-chaired by Naomi Oosman-Watts, Director of Student Success, and Paul Britton, Head of EDI and Colleague Wellbeing.


Race Equality Awareness Workshops support staff to strengthen their understanding of race equality and develop the skills for effective culture change.

They introduce participants to key concepts within the field of race equality. The aim is to improve knowledge and understanding about race and racism within a safe and reflective space.

Dealing with hate crime

The University is committed to creating an inclusive culture and one which does not tolerate hate crime, discrimination, victimisation or harassment. In line with this, any colleague or student who feels they have experienced or witnessed any form of hate crime, discrimination, bullying, harassment, or victimisation since coming to the University, can report incidents and find out more about via the Survivor Support Service. Colleagues can also report via our internal People Services webpages.

Using the links above, colleagues and students can report anonymously or via named reports which includes their contact details. In addition, report can be made on behalf of another colleagues or student, whilst visitors to the University can also make a report.

For those who prefer not to report using the forms in the links above, colleagues can email, whilst students can contact

Stop Hate UK provides supporting in 40 languages. It also has British Sign Language interpreters online, and provides an easy read service for people with learning disabilities. For further information, visit Stop Hate UK. You can also watch a short video explaining what a hate crime is and how you can report hate crimes while studying at Newcastle University.

NU Race Equality Network (NU REN)

NU REN play is integral to our race equality and overall equality, diversity and inclusion work at Newcastle University.

The Newcastle University Race Network for staff and PGRs represents and amplifies the voices of all colleagues and Postgraduate research (PGR) students who self-identify as belonging to a minoritised group. We also welcome White allies who actively support the broad strategic aims of the network by taking an anti-racist stance.

The network aims to help disadvantaged minoritised colleagues achieve their full potential. We aim to do this by creating positive change that benefits Newcastle University and the wider community in becoming ever more equitable.

Meet the members of NU REN

Left to right: Simon Kometa, Umbereen Moir, Andeep Sull, Meenakshi Swamy, Trevor James, Malasree Home, Kelechi Dibie, Lishan Sung, Anjam Khan, Vi Parker, Gaurav Kaushik, Naomi Oosman-Watts.

If you would like to become a member, please visit the NU REN blog.

For more information, contact the network via email.

You can read the NU REN Terms of Reference.

Armstrong Building Review

Following the murder in 2020 of George Floyd in the United States and the awareness raised by the Black Lives Matter movement, concerns were raised that Armstrong had sold arms to the Confederacy during the American Civil War (1861-1865) thereby benefiting from slavery.

While no clear evidence supporting this concern was found, the University did find visible links to imperialism and colonialism within its own legacy. Work to address this is continuing and future updates will be provided via an upcoming webpage.