Diversity and inclusion

Diversity and Inclusion

The BPS declares its commitment to promote equality, diversity and inclusion and to challenge prejudice and discrimination.

About

BPS strives to be national and global champion for equality, equity, diversity, inclusion and human rights. Our diverse membership and workforce are a source of strength in developing our services, and building a reputation for inclusivity, creativity and innovation in the delivery of EDI and Human Rights work.

It is our responsibility to protect, influence and uphold the values of human rights, equality, diversity and inclusion within the BPS. We are fully committed to eliminating unlawful and unfair discrimination and will not tolerate discrimination, harassment, bullying or victimisation of members, employees or contractors who work on behalf of BPS. Everyone who works for and with BPS has an important part to play in achieving our ambitions and commitments in relation to EDI.

Terminology

Equality means treating people fairly (not necessarily the same), and not treating them unfairly because of reasons protected by discrimination law such as a person’s gender, sexuality, age or race.

Equity an approach and a process that recognises the existence of systemic social inequalities and introduces actions to proactively reduce, if not remove, institutional structural and cultural barriers to equal opportunity and inclusion.

Diversity is about recognising and valuing the differences in the range of people in our workforce and membership, so that we can benefit from having a range of perspectives in decision-making.

Inclusion means everyone feels valued and that they belong without having to conform. It means that members and employees with different backgrounds, characteristics and ways of thinking feel psychologically safe and are encouraged to come up with different ideas and suggestions, to raise issues, and try new ways of doing things.

Human rights are basic rights and freedoms afforded to all people in the UK regardless of their nationality or social status. They are not privileges that can be taken away. They are founded on fundamental principles such as dignity, fairness, equality, respect and autonomy.

Intersectionality is when an individual’s race, gender, disability, sexual orientation and other characteristics or identities overlap or ‘intersect’ so that they can be affected by a number of discriminations and disadvantages.

Our commitments

Download BPS strategic framework

For more information please contact: [email protected]

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Board

The EDI Board is responsible for scrutiny and advice on the strategic direction and leadership of BPS EDI objectives and actions.

Chair of the board: Dr Adam Jowett

([email protected])

Dr Adam Jowett CPsychol AFBPsS is an Associate Head of the School of Psychological, Social & Behavioural Sciences at Coventry University. He has worked in higher education for over a decade including as a Course Director of a BPS accredited programme. 

He has a track record of engaging in EDI activity within his university and has been actively involved in diversifying the curriculum, including through creating a module on gender and sexual diversity that takes an intersectional approach. His research has focused largely on LGBT+ issues and he led research on conversion therapy commissioned by the UK Government Equalities Office. He is also on the Editorial Board of the journal Psychology & Sexuality.

Adam has served on the committees of BPS Member Networks for over a decade, including as Chair of the Sexualities Section, member of Research Board, member of Senate and as a trustee of the Society. 

He's committed to championing equality, diversity and inclusion, challenging discrimination and bias and working as an ally for all who experience exclusion and inequity.

Read the full terms of reference to find out more.

Advisory Groups  

  • Human Rights Advisory Group  Read the full terms of reference
  • Inclusive Psychology Advisory Group
  • Experts by Experience Advisory Group

Webinars

Beginning to Talk about Diversity and Inclusion in Neuropsychology

Watch Beginning to Talk about Diversity and Inclusion in Neuropsychology, a ground-breaking webinar where honest discussion refreshes the air around these important and sensitive issues.

Talking about diversity among LGBT+ people

Talking about diversity among LGBT+ people was the second webinar in the Presidential Taskforce series on Diversity and Inclusion.

This webinar examined labels and self- identification, as the panel deconstructed mono-sexist views and talked about the effects of discrimination.

The pre-recorded session was hosted by trustee and chair of the BPS Psychology of Sexualities Section Adam Jowett.

Adam was joined by Dr Helen Driscoll, an evolutionary psychologist and  with research interests including sexuality and sexual behaviour, dark personality, adult play and higher education pedagogy and, and Rusi Jaspal,  a professor of psychology at Nottingham Trent University and a fellow of the British Psychological Society.

Professor Jaspal is an ambassador for the Honour Abuse Research Matrix in recognition of his research into forced marriage in British South Asian communities and author of more than one hundred journal articles and book chapters, many of which focus on identity among LGBT people and ethnic minorities.

The live discussion was hosted by Nasreen Fazal-Short, chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Presidential Taskforce.

Decolonising the curriculum

Decolonising the curriculum was the third webinar in the presidential Taskforce series on Diversity and Inclusion. 

This webinar examined how decolonisation can re- appropriate cultural ideas of people that were subverted by colonial history. We examined what is being taught, how it is being taught and what is missing. We asked questions about who’s voice isn’t being heard and how do we bring those voices to the forefront.

Decolonising the curriculum is not about moving or dumping what is being taught presently, it’s about creating space and introducing multiple voices set to enrich and empower the curriculum as well as continue the long journey of  decolonising the mind.

The pre-recorded session was hosted by Dr Patrick Hylton.

In addtion to his position of senior lecturer at Lincoln University, Patrick has produced numerous articles for publication.

In association with former colleages Debbie Weekes Bernard and Tina Ramkalawan he created one of the first Black psychology modules in the UK in the late 1990’s, which was taught at Nottingham Trent University.

One of Patrick's most notable works, Now that we found love what are we going to do with it?, is a narrative understanding of Black identity and  was published in the Theory and Psycolology Journal.

For the pre-recorded session Patrick was joined by Dr Udeni Salmon and Dr Michele Perry-Springer.

Dr Udeni Salmon is part of an interdisciplinary team working on creating a dynamic and interactive web-based platform aimed at accelerating meaningful changes in attitude and behaviour towards diversity, and facilitating inclusive research environments across the sector. Udeni’ s subject specialisms and research interests are concerned with how power manifests itself in organisational relationships. She uses intersectionality, critical race theory, black feminist theory and Pierre Bourdieu's "thinking tools" to theoretically inform her work. She writes in the areas of family firms, entrepreneurship, innovation, and modern slavery.

Dr Michele Perry-Springer is an educator with 25 years’ experience and many of those years have been with work and support to children young people with learning disabilities. She is also the president of the Association of Black Psychologists and is actively developing significant work within the black communities introducing psychological frameworks based on African traditions.

Michele has worked as an Educational Psychologist for the past 15 years, working within schools to support the needs of children both in mainstream and specialist settings. Committed to helping to remove barriers to learning and to narrowing the gap for children and young people who are disadvantaged by their circumstances Michele’s specialism is working with children and young people in care and those who have been adopted.

The live panel was hosted by Presidential taskforce chair Dr Nasreen Fazal-Short.

Alongside the webinar speakers Nasreen was joined by:

  • Malcolm Phillips, a board member of the UK Chapter of the Association of Black Psychologists.  He has spent more than 30 years developing and managing mental health and counselling services for Black communities in the NHS, local authorities and in the voluntary sector. He was the founder and chair of Safoa, the National African and Caribbean mental Health Network and with Pattigift African Centred Therapy Service delivers a Diploma in Black Psychology and African-Centred Therapy. 

  • Layne Whittaker, an undergraduate psychology student at the Open University, graduating in 2021.She work as a British Sign Language Interpreter, making sure members of the Deaf community have equal access, and ultimately aims to complete an MSc in Occupational psychology focusing on Diversity and inclusion. Layne is a member of the taskforce

  • Simon Goodman, a senior lecturer in psychology who uses discursive psychology to address a number of issues. Simon specialises on the ways in which potentially prejudicial arguments against asylum seekers as well as issues around race and racism.

  • Laura Kilby, a Reader in social psychology based at Sheffield Hallam University. As a critical social psychologist her primary research interests centre upon examining relationships between power, discourse and the construction of marginalised identities and marginalised groups. Laura is a member of the taskforce

  • Fabianna Dennis, a 2nd year psychology and behavioural sciences undergraduate student at Cambridge University. Fabianna recently featured in a BBC documentary called Being Black at Cambridge.

Talking about intellectual disability and double discrimination

In this webinar we will be talking to experts by lived experience about intersectionality and intellectual disability.

We will also hear from psychologists exploring how double discrimination needs to be addressed through psychological practice.

Exploring barriers to men talking about their mental health

There are many mental health statistics that point to men’s mental health as an area of heightened concern. There is also significant amount of men’s mental health that goes simply unreported.

The Office for National Statistics shows that in quarter three of 2020, there were 16.3 deaths per 100,000 males (992 deaths registered) and 5.4 suicide deaths per 100,000 females (342 deaths registered); these rates are similar to rates observed in the same quarter in previous years.

In this webinar we unpack what the barriers are to men talking about their mental health, and what can psychology do to support men in coming forward and receiving appropriate timely and well-considered treatments.

Talking about class in psychology: the seen and the unseen

This is the sixth in the series of webinars from the presidential taskforce on diversity and inclusion.

This month we are going to be talking about how social mobility and class impacts psychology, looking at places of privilege and disempowerment and take a deeper dive into what this means, how it relates to psychology and what can be done to widen pathways and increase access.

Speakers include:

  • Dr Will Curvis
  • Sarah St Ledger
  • Dr Ben Campbell
  • Amy Goddard
  • Dr Nasreen Fazal-Short
  • Dr Cathy Amore
  • Leah Sharkah
  • Dr Debra Malpass
  • Helena Vine

Tackling racism across psychological professions

This seventh webinar in the series from the presidential taskforce on diversity and inclusion looked at how we tackle racism across various psychological professions.

Examining the spaces where structural racism sits, this important discussion took place across all psychological professions and examined what the professions need to do to challenge racism, increase awareness and foster inclusivity.

The live discussion was held on a global platform with the inclusion of the American Psychological Association, The European Federation of Psychologists’ Associations as well as key figures influential figures within the UK.

In the pre-record we heard from:

  • Adrian Whittington  -  National Lead for Psychological Professions, NHS England
  • Nasreen Fazal –Short – chair of the presidential taskforce on Diversity and Inclusion
  • Michelle Brooks-Ucheaga is a lecturer and a programme lead at the University of Derby and co-author of the Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority (BAME) positive practice guide published in 2019
  • Dr Alan Kessedjian – chair of DCP task and finish group for race culture ethnicity and anti-racism,
  • Dr Mvikeli Ncube a social psychologist and speaker on anti-racist practice.
Speakers on live discussion
Dr Y. Evie Garcia, PhD - President (2020-2022) Division 45 American Psychological Association

Associate Professor and Doctoral Training Director Dr. Garcia has a PhD in Counselling Psychology and is the Chief Diversity Officer for APA  working on advancing EDI across the association, the field of psychology and society. Dr Garcia sits on The Council of National Psychology Associations for the Advancement of Ethnic Minority Interests (CNPAAEMI) which collaborates with other ethnic minority associations in training of Leadership Fellows.

Dr Faisal Mahmood

Dr Mahmood is a UKCP registered individual and group gestalt psychotherapist, BACP accredited counsellor and UKCP approved clinical supervisor. Currently, he works as a senior lecturer in counselling and psychotherapy at Newman University (Birmingham) heading up post graduate programmes (MSc & Advance Diploma) in Counselling & Psychotherapy (UKCP accredited). He has over 20 years of clinical experience.

Dr Lizann Bonnar

Dr Bonnar Is a doctor of philosophy and has a PhD in Psychology. Working at Strathclyde university Lizann is a member of the under-graduate training committee (UEC) for the BPS and is leading the working group on equality diversity and Inclusion for the UEC, and is also looking at decolonisation of the curriculum.  Dr Bonnar is also a programme reviewer for the UEC, and visits accredited programs across the UK to ensure they meet with the BPS’s standards.

Michelle Brooks-Ucheaga

Michelle is a lecturer and a programme lead at the University of Derby.  She is an elected Trustee and sits on the Board of Trustees for the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) which is the lead organisation for CBT in the UK and Ireland.  Michelle is a co-author of the Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority (BAME) positive practice guide published in 2019.   Michelle is also a peer reviewer for both the Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy Journal and the Cognitive Behaviour Therapist Journal and also sits on the Editorial Board for the Cognitive Behaviour Therapist journal.

Professor David Gillborn – professor of critical race studies . Editor in chief of the journal Race Ethnicity and  Education

David’s research focuses on race inequalities in education, especially the role of racism as a changing and complex characteristic of the system. He has written 6 books and more than 140 refereed articles, chapters and reports that range from original studies in classrooms and with teachers, through national reviews of research evidence in the field, to analyses of the changing policy landscape internationally. He is closely associated with the approach known as ‘Critical Race Theory’ and, in 2012, received the Derrick Bell Legacy Award; the highest honour possible from the US-based Critical Race Studies in Education Association (CRSEA).  

Emeritus professor Suman Fernando

Formerly a consultant psychiatrist in Enfield Middlesex for over twenty years, Suman is Emeritus Professor of Social Sciences at London Metropolitan University. He is known for his work in researching and presenting transcultural psychiatry a critical approach to the Eurocentric system from a ‘race’ and culture perspective, and his writing on how institutional racism is embedded in these disciplines when practiced in western countries. Suman has lectured extensively in Canada, the UK, and other parts of Europe on issues of ‘race’ and culture in psychiatry and latterly on mental health development in non-European settings including Sri Lanka, his country of origin.

Suman’s last two books are: Institutional Racism in Psychiatry and Clinical Psychology (2017); and co-edited Global Psychologies; Mental Health in the Global South (2018). Read more

Ulrike De Ponte

Scientific director for Psychology at the department of applied natural sciences and cultural studies OTH Regensburg Germany. convenor of the Board on Cultural and Ethnic Diversity from the European federation of Psychologists – the umbrella organisation leading the federation of 38 member associations from 38 European countries. EFPA ‘s mission is to promote the development, dissemination and application of psychology in all its forms, and to contribute to shaping a humane society in Europe and beyond.

The live discussion was hosted by Dr Nasreen Fazal-Short.

Challenging disability - embracing human diversity

Becoming a psychologist can be challenging in itself without the added hurdles that may be presented by the discipline if you are a disabled person.

Speaking to several experts by experience we will examine issues around disability by talking to psychologists with lived experience across a range of issues, including whether we need a much greater societal shift on how we view disability and whether diversity initiatives are really enough to create an inclusive society.

The discussion will consider and debate intersectional issues around disability from a psychological perspective as well as looking at how we can move forwards in certain areas to create equal opportunities and fairness across the board.

How to implement anti-racist practice

This ninth webinar in the series from the presidential taskforce on diversity and inclusion is a step on from our seventh webinar when we looked at how we tackle racism across various psychological professions.

Having examined the spaces where structural racism sits, we now look at how to implement anti-racist practice.

We will highlight the discussions that need to be had and look at the biased beliefs, attitudes and opinions that may sit within these spaces.