Equity & Diversity

Equity and Diversity Statement

ACEMS is underpinned by a commitment to equal opportunity and diversity. Centre members strive to treat everyone in an unbiased and inclusive manner, and to remove barriers of disadvantage, for all of its members and the wider professional community.

Equity and diversity issues are wide ranging and include age, living location, gender, gender orientation, sexuality, religion, indigenous status, non-English speaking background, race, disability, mental and physical health, pregnancy, parenting and other responsibilities related to care of dependants.

The student and staff body in the Mathematical Sciences should reflect the diversity of the community. ACEMS has a role in leading the Mathematical Sciences towards this. Therefore, ACEMS has particular strategies to help under-represented and disadvantaged groups to overcome barriers and to promote equality of opportunity.

A major issue faced by the Mathematical Sciences is gender equity. ACEMS supports the statements and recommendations in the Women in Mathematics Special Interest Group (WIMSIG) Report on Gender Equity in Mathematical Research Environments (Hall, 2013)i, the Science in Australia Gender Equality Pilotii, the Athena Swan Charteriii and the gold award winning CAASTRO Diversity Policyiv.

ACEMS has undertaken a review of these and other equity and diversity documents, and has formulated the following Programme.

The ACEMS Programme

The charter of the ACEMS Equity and Diversity Programme is to recognise the advancement of equity and diversity through representation, progression and success for all. All people have a right to be treated fairly by ACEMS and by each other, and to study and work in an environment free from discrimination and harassment.

Through its Equity and Diversity Programme, ACEMS aims to achieve this Charter through the following five-point plan:

1. Establish an Equity and Diversity Committee

a. The primary functions of the Committee will be to provide oversight of the Equity and Diversity Programme, be the first port of call for ACEMS staff to discuss equity and diversity,      and report to the Executive Committee as required.

2. Support equity and diversity among ACEMS members

a. Institute an environment within the Centre that has no tolerance for behaviour that contravenes the Programme charter.

b. Establish and support formal mentoring of equity and diversity groups.

c. Ensure that all ACEMS members undergo equal opportunity training.

d. Support flexible work arrangements to accommodate an individual’s needs and responsibilities and to assist participation in the workforce.

e. Be cognisant of equity and diversity issues when scheduling ACEMS meetings. For example, family friendly times are typically between 9.30am and 2.30pm.

f. Video or record in other ways relevant seminars, workshops and Centre meetings and openly disseminate them.

g. Where appropriate, include dependants and/or carers in travel arrangements. For example, for parents with children, include childcare arrangements.

h. Respect equity and diversity when choosing the place and time of social activities.

3. Support equity and diversity in recruitment

a. Examine the diversity and gender composition of all Centre appointments and personnel categories, and where necessary set gender and diversity targets for hiring.

b. Be mindful of equity and diversity when developing Centre material.

c. Appraise job descriptions and selection criteria for exclusive or gendered language and content.

d. Appoint diverse and gender balanced selection panels and committees.

e. Encourage all jobs to be offered with a part-time option and the capacity to work off campus.

4. Support equity and diversity in the profession

a. When it is impractical for an ACEMS member to visit another site, support visits by their colleagues to the ACEMS site.

b. Support equity and diversity among speakers at events held by ACEMS.

c. Consider the impact of school holidays, religious calendars and other possible commitments on the timing and location of events held by ACEMS.

d. Provide video-conference options for all ACEMS run meetings and conferences, where this is practical.

e. Examine and challenge equity and diversity balance at national and international conferences, workshops and events sponsored by ACEMS.

5. Support equity and diversity in the community

a. Encourage outreach activities targeted to women.

b. Strongly discourage the use of an ACEMS member’s personal information, such as age, marital and parental status, in introductions, press coverage and reference letters.

c. Actively support other relevant equity and diversity programme's promoted by external groups.

d. “Call out” behaviour that is not consistent with the Programme charter, wherever it occurs and whoever is responsible.


i http://wp.maths.usyd.edu.au/dplan/gender-equity-in-mathematical-research-environments-2/
ii http://www.sciencegenderequity.org.au/
iii http://www.ecu.ac.uk/equality-charters/athena-swan/
iv http://www.caastro.org/gender-action-toolkit