Equality, diversity and inclusion

Here at the University of South Wales (USW), we are challenging ourselves to think and act differently. 

We are embarking upon a journey together to create equitable spaces for all where boxes do not define us. Taking inspiration from our students and our community, we are tackling stigmas and removing barriers. We will achieve this through a shared sense of belonging and co-production as a USW family.

Our objectives and commitments

Our commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion has been embedded into how we operate as a university.

Strategic Equality Plan Annual Reports are published by 31 March each year. A separate annual report is produced by each institution in the USW Group - The College Merthyr Tydfil and The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

For further information on the Strategic Equality Plan, please contact: [email protected].

Our equality, diversity and inclusion achievements

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Race Equality Charter

In September 2020, USW confirmed its commitment to progress with Advance HE’s Race Equality Charter (REC). This Charter provides a framework through which UK Higher Education institutions demonstrate their commitment to removing institutional and cultural barriers standing in the way of Black, Asian and Minority Ethic colleagues and students achieving success. 

A link to the USW Initial Teacher Education Partnership’s Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic Recruitment plan can be found here.

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University of Sanctuary

USW has been awarded University of Sanctuary status. This recognises the University’s commitment to creating a culture of welcome for people seeking sanctuary within, and beyond, its campuses. The Universities of Sanctuary scheme was established in 2017 by City of Sanctuary, a national charity which works to provide places of safety for all. The aim of the scheme is to inspire and support universities to adopt a culture and practice of welcome within their own institutions, in their wider communities, and across the UK Higher Education sector.

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Athena Swan

USW has been recognised for its commitment to gender equality by achieving the Athena SWAN Bronze award. Athena SWAN is Advance HE’s gender charter, and acknowledges the actions undertaken by Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) with relation to gender equality issues.

Stonewall Diversity Champion

Stonewall Cymru Diversity Champion

USW joined Stonewall Cymru’s Diversity Champions Scheme in 2016. The programme for employers aims to ensure that all LGBTQ+ colleagues are accepted without exception in the workplace. Through membership to this programme, Stonewall share with us a library of research and best-practice guides, help us plan our priorities, give us feedback on our initiatives and review our polices to ensure they are LGBTQ+ inclusive.

Stonewall 2020

Stonewall Top 100 Employers 2020

The Stonewall UK Workplace Equality Index is the benchmarking tool for employers to measure their progress on lesbian, gay, bi and trans inclusion in the workplace. USW rose to 24th in the 2020 Workplace Equality Index - USW was also named as a Top Trans Employer by Stonewall in 2020.

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Disability Confident Scheme

USW are proud to be a Disability Confident employer, which means taking action to improve how we recruit, retain, and develop disabled people. The scheme helps employers draw from the widest possible pool of talent and improve employee morale by demonstrating that they treat all employees fairly.

GTRSB into Higher Education Pledge

Gypsy, Roma, Traveller, Boater and Showmen (GTRSB) into Higher Education Pledge

USW has committed to adopting the Gypsy, Roma, Traveller, Boater and Showmen (GTRSB) into Higher Education Pledge. This pledge was made during Gypsy, Roma, and Traveller History Month (June) 2023.

The Pledge represents a firm commitment by an educational institution to undertake steps to support students from GTRSB communities into and within higher education.

Equality, diversity and inclusion in action

Colleague and student data

To ensure that our workforce is representative, we aim to capture and monitor diversity data of all colleagues, job applicants, promotions, pay, grievance, discipline and training take up. Similar work is taking place for students.


*Please note that there has been a delay in publishing a student data report for our Annual Equality Reporting 2022-23 due to data and capacity issues. This is being rectified with a view to publishing as soon as possible.