As you may have heard RCA has hired a consultancy firm called Nous. This consultancy is working with RCA to help it achieve its objective of becoming an anti-racist institution. The consultants will focus on issues pertaining to staff and students and their work will be used to assist in the new hiring of the Head of Diversity and Inclusion. This has been of specific importance, especially following the oversight in the hiring of the first Head of Diversity and Inclusion. The consultancy is due to last from now until January, with the new EDI Manager hired and in place by the Spring. UCU Union wrote a letter to senior management in the last academic year outlining systemic racism at the RCA as well as proposing steps to address it.
To inform you and gain further context of racism within the RCA, the consultancy is asking for students and staff to participate in “listening sessions”. We, at the SU, have growing concerns about the anonymity, after-care and conduct of these listening sessions and the effect they might have on our student community. We have collaborated with the UCU Union (University and College Union, who represent a large number of academic and academic support staff members at the RCA) and Unite Union (who also represent a number of technical staff members working at the RCA) to put out an open letter, urging senior management to address our concerns before we encourage students or staff to participate in these listening sessions. Please read our open letter.