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Wednesday 26 October 2016

FDA teams up with cross-Government race networks to invest in BME leaders

The FDA has joined new senior cross-Government race networks to help address the continuing under-representation of BME leaders at senior levels within the civil service.

The partnership - with Race to the Top Networks for those at grades 6, 7 and the Senior Civil Service (SCS) - will initially focus on providing leadership development opportunities for BME colleagues in the SCS feeder grades, helping them to prepare for leadership at the next level.

The scheme provides opportunities for BME civil servants to shadow an SCS colleague in their own or another department, for two to three days during the first three months of 2017.

FDA General Secretary Dave Penman said: “With BME representation in the Senior Civil Service remaining persistently low at around 4%, despite clear improvements in other areas of diversity, it is time for a stronger, more concerted focus on this issue.

“There is a need for new and integrated approaches to drive change. Linking the FDA’s equality initiatives with that of the network will strengthen and help create new opportunities for BME leaders to gain deeper insights and demystify leadership at the next level.”

Anita Bhalla, Co-Chair of the grade 6 and 7 Race to the Top Network, said: “I am delighted that we will now be working closely with the FDA union with the joint aim of seeing greater ethnic diversity in the SCS. There is plenty of BME talent in the civil service and no clear reason why under-representation should remain at the current levels.”

SCS volunteers should email equalitymatters@fda.org.uk to register, whilst BME colleagues looking to participate should email anita.bhalla@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk outlining any departmental, professional or regional preferences they would like to be considered in arranging an SCS shadowing match.

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