The 2017 UK Government-sponsored Race in the Workplace: The McGregor-Smith Review detailed the disparities in employment and progression experienced by black and minority ethnic people (BAME). The findings led Business in the Community (BITC) to create the Race at Work Charter in late 2018. The charter is linked to BITC’s Race at Work Scorecard (which looks at how UK employers were performing against the recommendations outlined in the McGregor-Smith Review) and outlines calls to action to improve race equality, inclusion and diversity in the workplace. 

Following the results of the Race at Work 2021 survey, the charter has been expanded to include allyship and inclusive supply chain commitments, meaning signatories are now required to make seven commitments: 

  1. Appoint an executive sponsor for race. 

  1. Capture ethnicity data and publicise progress. 

  1. Commit at board level to zero tolerance of harassment and bullying. 

  1. Make equality , diversity and inclusion the responsibility of all leaders and managers. 

  1. Take action that supports black, Asian, mixed race and other ethnically diverse employees’ career progression. 

  1. Support race inclusion allies in the workplace. 

  1. Include black, Asian, mixed race and other ethnically-led enterprise owners in supply chain. 

BITC has a clear set of objectives that it wants signatories to achieve, which includes: 

  • encouraging leadership, allyship and connections to foster advocates and allies that are willing to proactively take actions to ensure their workplace is safe and inclusive 

  • encouraging businesses to take strategic action on leadership by bringing the attention of all senior leaders within the organisation to the issue of race relations 

  • promoting mentoring and sponsorship of ethnic minority employees by putting them forward for development or progression opportunities, especially in organisations that do not have ethnic minority role models in senior positions 

  • co-developing or co-creating race equality and inclusion strategies with people from all race equality groups. 

This guide aims to provide a practical framework that signatories of the Race at Work Charter can follow to meet the seven calls to action. We have given research-backed recommendations to improve race EDI and highlighted resources to support the race inclusion commitments. 

CIPD view

The Race at Work Charter and how to meet the seven commitments

Conclusion and further resources

Advice for small businesses on meeting the Race at Work Charter

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