UK (Ulster University) Ulster University Gains White Ribbon Accreditation In Support Of Ending Violence Against Women

On Friday 25 November, Ulster University was awarded White Ribbon Accreditation which underlines its commitment to our students, staff and whole university community, that the university will continue to work towards achieving gender equality and ending violence against women and girls.

Damian McAlister, Chief People Officer, welcomed colleagues and guests to the event, which was organised by White Ribbon NI and Ulster University Wo/men’s Network.

Tahnee McCorry, Director of White Ribbon NI, joined the event in support of Ulster University taking the pledge and committing to the Listen, Learn, Lead 3-year plan to take steps to make our society a safer place for women.

Colleagues from across the University also attended the event to show their support – these included Mark Latuske (Deputy Director of People & Culture (Employee Experience), Amanda Castray (Director of Campus Life), Paul Connolly (Executive Dean of Faculty of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences), Prof Che Lubin (Co-Director, Confucius Institute), and Deirdre Scullion from the Student Wellbeing team, with others tuning in to watch the event being live streamed to both the Coleraine and Derry-Londonderry campuses, including Prof Malachy Ó Néill, Director of Regional Engagement.

Being White Ribbon accredited affirms the University’s promise to never commit, condone or remain silent about violence against women and girls. This, along with Ulster University’s Strategy to end violence and UUSU’s Active Consent campaign, gives a strong message that violence in any form is wrong and how we can all tackle it together.

Colleagues were then invited to move to the Pledge Christmas Tree on BC Level 2, where they were invited to hang a tag signifying one action they will make to LISTEN, LEARN and LEAD in ending Violence against Women and Girls.

Damian McAlister, Chief People Officer at Ulster University, said:

“At Ulster University we are committed to ensuring that all staff and students feel supported and safe, and I am honoured to attend this event and represent the University as we gain White Ribbon accreditation for our work in ensuring that violence against women and girls must end.

“We have worked hard to get to this point to gain accreditation, however much remains to be done and I look forward to working with the Wo/men’s Network, our Trade Unions but most critically all staff and students to make lasting change and ensure that Ulster University is a safe place to work and study.”

Violence against women, whether it occurs within the workplace, or outside of an organisation, is a serious, prevalent and preventable issue.

Men’s violence – in all its forms – has an impact on the health and safety of employees, their well-being and their productivity. It impacts negatively on workplace culture, organisational reputation and success. Outward facing organisations can also make a significant difference by the way in which they relate to their customers and stakeholders.

Benefits of being White Ribbon Accredited:

All organisations, large or small are able to become White Ribbon UK Accredited.

Gaining White Ribbon Accreditation will help Ulster University to:

make a difference in our communities to end violence against women

improve our organisational culture, safety and morale

increase the knowledge and skills of our staff to address violence against women

improve our reputation

improve the experience of our customers and stakeholders

become an employer of choice.

Sarah Smyth, Wo/Men’s Network Steering Group member, concluded:

“White Ribbon Accreditation shows that Ulster University, as an institution, is standing alongside local and international institutions in never ignoring, condoning or committing violence against women and girls. It represents an important step towards fostering an environment free of misogyny and broadcasts the message to the world that we all have our own part to play in challenging sexist behaviour and thought patterns.”