In a letter published by The Guardian on Thursday 4 June, the heads of 46 Oxford Colleges and Halls pledge to “promote, protect and advance equal dignity and respect, diversity of thought, good race relations, tolerance and multiculturalism in our institutions and the world”.
The letter – reproduced in full below – was written in response to protests and unrest related to racism in the US.
As laid out in its Equality Statement, Nuffield College is committed to protecting the rights of individuals and to promoting equal opportunities regardless of race, age, disability, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity, religion and belief (or lack thereof), sex and sexual orientation.
Full text of the letter sent by Oxford Heads of Colleges to The Guardian, 4 June 2020
The events in the US dramatise the consequences of allowing deeply embedded racist attitudes to be subject to too little challenge. Conscious and unconscious racial bias, and inaction in addressing them, remain prevalent across many institutions.
We write in a personal capacity as heads of Oxford Colleges to reassert our belief in the need to promote, protect and advance equal dignity and respect, diversity of thought, good race relations, tolerance and multiculturalism in our institutions and the world.
We acknowledge the role that education can play in building racial equality and fair inclusion of black voices and perspectives in society. We recognise and regret that, for black members of our community, the unfolding crisis together with the disproportionate impact of the pandemic on their communities has caused them particular anxiety, anger and pain.
We stand with them during these difficult moments with hope that, through the global mobilisation of many against these injustices, through education, discussion, and peaceful protest, we may work together towards a world free of systemic racism and discrimination.