We are delighted to confirm that Somerville College recently signed the Oxfordshire Inclusive Economy Charter, solidifying our commitment to foster a fair and inclusive workplace and create positive impact within our home county of Oxfordshire.
The OIEP Charter encourages organisations to take specific actions to make Oxfordshire a fairer and more inclusive place to work. There is an urgent need for such community-based alliances due to the fact that Oxfordshire, despite its global position and significant contribution to the UK economy, remains home to significant inequalities. 17 of 61 wards within the county currently rank among the most deprived in England, while Oxford remains the second most unequal place in the UK in terms of income, housing affordability, life expectancy and educational provision.
By creating better jobs, education, investment and sustainable local business networks, the OIEP Charter will seek to address these challenges and reduce inequality for people throughout Oxfordshire. The Charter affirms our shared commitment to building a more diverse and inclusive workforce, recognising the importance of recruiting talent from a wide range of backgrounds, including not only young people from disadvantaged backgrounds but people from diverse backgrounds and older people who have valuable skills to share.
Inclusivity is baked into our DNA at Somerville, and a big part of maintaining that egalitarian ethos is remembering that we share this county with so many fantastic communities and people.
Somerville College currently employs over 400 people in Oxfordshire and is an existing signatory of the Oxford Living Wage, which commits organisations to pay above the national minimum wage in recognition of Oxford’s high cost of living. Our college also seeks to promote sustainability and support Oxfordshire food producers and businesses by sourcing all our produce as locally as possible.
“We are thrilled to sign the OIEP Charter and align ourselves with its values,” said Jan Royall, Principal of Somerville College. “Inclusivity is baked into our DNA at Somerville, and a big part of maintaining that egalitarian ethos is remembering that we share this county with so many fantastic businesses, communities and people. I would be delighted to see other Colleges within the University sign up to this important Charter.”