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The Board of Trustees and everyone working at the South London Gallery are committed to being a truly inclusive organisation, enhanced through the diversity of our programmes, audiences and staff. Our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan embraces ethnicity, gender identity, sexuality, socio-economic background, disability, neurodiversity, health, age and religion to ensure that intersectionality is clearly addressed.

In 2020 we published a statement and our Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Action Plan, pledging to become a distinctly more diverse organisation by 2023. Progress has been made in some areas and we continue to implement and review our action plan on an ongoing basis.

We continually review strategies that aren’t working and consult regularly with all SLG staff, the Board and external advisors who contributed to the original plan, which is richer for their input and feedback. We devote the necessary leadership and staff time to set goals and achieve them, proactively seeking funding to make this possible, and ensuring it remains at the top of our agenda, organisation wide.

The most up-to-date version of our plan, summarised below, includes updates on progress and learning to date, and how we will continue to evolve and embed this work into the DNA of the organisation.

Board of Trustees, Staff & Workplace Culture

Developments over the past two years include:

  • All staff and board members undertake Equality, Diversity and Inclusion training.
  • An Equalities Advisory Sub-Committee of our Board meets quarterly to hold the organisation to account.
  • A review of our recruitment practice. We ensure that there is a person of colour on every interview panel, have reviewed application packs to make our commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion more explicit, as well as our pay scales to improve opportunities for pay progression.
  • We are a Disability Confident employer, which has resulted in an increase in disabled people being shortlisted for roles.
  • We expanded our board of trustees. Currently 57% of our board are Black, Asian or ethnically diverse.
  • From data collected in April 2023, we know that 33% of SLG staff identify as Black, Asian or ethnically diverse, 29.5% as disabled, 27% as neurodivergent and 46% as LGBTQ+.

Commitments for next 12 months include:

  • At Manager level and above our team is less diverse: 16% Black, Asian and ethnically diverse, 17% disabled, 5% neurodivergent and 39% LGBTQ+. In collaboration with our Equalities Advisory Committee, we are developing strategies to address this disparity and we commit to reporting on this data to all staff on an annual basis.
  • To track via our surveys how many of our staff and board members identify as being from a lower socio-economic background and for this to inform our recruitment strategies.
  • To ensure our Board is more representative of disabled people and people who identify as LGBTQ+.
  • To establish a relationship with Southwark’s Youth Parliament, to act as young advisors to our Board.
  • To devise a shared understanding of what it means to be an anti-racist organisation with our Equalities Advisory Committee, Senior Management Team and an external practitioner.
  • To analyse disparities between diversity of candidates at job application stage and those that are shortlisted, identifying changes we need to make to our recruitment practice as a result.
  • To conduct and learn from a staff Wellbeing Survey.

Artistic & Education Programme

Developments over the past two years include:

  • We increased the representation of artists from Black, Asian or ethnically diverse backgrounds in our exhibitions and events programmes, achieving our aim to be representative of the population of Southwark which is 49% Black, Asian or ethnically diverse.
  • Our exhibitions adhere to accessibility standards including hanging work and interactives at accessible height, ensuring step-free access, wheelchair accessible routes, providing transcripts and subtitles and accessible seating.
  • We piloted free hires of SLG meeting spaces for artists and local residents and organisations at Art Block and in the Fire Station.
  • We nurtured new relationships with local organisations, including Flat 70, Off the Curriculum, Opportunity Hub, Rainbow Collective and Heart n Soul.
  • We delivered our Making Sense programme, focusing on targeted support for teachers to explore anti-racism and decolonisation via CPD workshops and creating a free online platform for others to share work.
  • We have included a young person in the interview panel for all new staff and artists recruited to the Youth Programme – platforming youth voice.

Commitments for the next 12 months include:

  • To embed our open hire policy for Art Block and the Fire Station, and implement marketing strategies to ensure local awareness.
  • To develop a community hub model at Art Block. Piloting a shared collaborative approach across education strands supporting children’s mental health.
  • To begin dedicated research into artists who identify as neurodiverse / disabled to inform future programming.
  • To embed an accessible events policy and train our events staff and gallery assistants on setting up accessible events.
  • To deliver a major new partnership with New Curators, collaborating on a paid curatorial training programme for people who identify as being from a lower socio-economic background.

Audiences & Visitor Welcome

Developments over the past two years include:

  • A review of SLG audience-facing marketing materials (digital and print) and guidelines put in place to ensure they are accessible to the widest possible audience. This includes (but is not limited to) ensuring that all events and exhibition materials include access information, creating accessible materials such as easy read guides and reviewing all our public facing written materials.
  • Commissioning an audit on website accessibility and implementing recommended changes, such as developing content for screen readers, reviewing image sizes and Alt Text and updating map functionality.
  • Updating the access information available on the website including the addition of a sensory map and Easy Read guides for exhibitions.
  • Conducting an audit of all buildings for accessibility with immediate, mid-term and long-term action items.
  • Making changes to public areas to improve physical access and maintain an inclusive and welcoming space for all visitors.
  • Staff across departments, including Front of House, have taken part in autism awareness, trans awareness, disability confidence, Tourette’s Syndrome awareness, diversity & inclusion, and mental health first aider training.
  • Developing relationships with new partners and suppliers to help us engage with new and more diverse audiences.

Commitments for the next 12 months include:

  • To ensure that the SLG website is accessible to as many audiences as possible, adding more information for visitors, including visual stories and videos of the SLG’s spaces.
  • To organise tours and events specifically for audiences with access needs, such as audio described tours.
  • To continue to work with new partners and suppliers to reach and engage new and more diverse audiences.
  • To research funding opportunities to further improve the physical accessibility of all buildings.


Developments over the past two years include:

  • We have reviewed the images and language used in our funding applications and presentations to ensure they are representative of the work we do and our audiences.
  • Access information is included in all Development events invitations.
  • We have reviewed and updated our Fundraising Policy and implemented a new Due Diligence Checklist which includes any negative association with equality, diversity and inclusion being identified as a red flag.
  • Wherever possible we have prioritised applying for multi-year grants when seeking funding for staff posts, to create better job security.

Commitments for the next 12 months include:

  • To continue to create a more diverse philanthropic community at the SLG, that is more representative of the public we serve; to share and learn with peer organisations; and support artists and local community groups in their fund-raising efforts.
  • To review and refresh the SLG’s Patron and Membership ‘Join Us’ brochure to ensure it is welcoming and inclusive.
  • To review our wider fundraising materials, and set guidelines for the images we select, how we write and speak about participants in our programmes and the local area, to ensure these are more representative of the people and communities we work with, and that the language we use is appropriate.
  • To prioritise securing funding to support the equality, diversity and inclusion aims of our programmes.
  • To expand the SLG’s development committee, to represent different voices from across the philanthropic community, which in turn will open up new fundraising opportunities.

The SLG Shop

Developments over the past two years include:

  • We have reviewed our suppliers and work with increased numbers of local designers and makers, including those who are Black, Asian or ethnically diverse, disabled, neurodiverse, come from a range of socio-economic backgrounds or identify as LGBTQ+.
  • We have a long-standing commitment to representing a diverse range of artists, photographers and authors in our product range. We host a forward-thinking selections of books on gender, race, disability and socioeconomics in London.
  • We have hosted a range of events where those organising and reading were ethnically diverse, neurodiverse, disabled or identified as LGBTQ+.
  • We hosted the PageMasters Zine Fair that promoted the work of many trans, disabled and Black, Asian and ethnically diverse and neurodiverse authors, as well as those from different socio-economic backgrounds who self-publish their titles independently, using sustainable printing practices.

Commitments for the next 12 months include:

  • To expand our online shop to include a selection of books from Black, Asian and ethnically diverse and neurodiverse authors, as well as those from different socio-economic backgrounds.
  • To evaluate our recent shift towards working with small suppliers, with a goal of at least 50% of the makers we work with coming from Black, Asian and ethnically diverse backgrounds.
  • Deliver a series of readings in the bookshop that gives a platform to ethnically diverse writers, those from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds, or writers that are neurodiverse.
  • To evaluate the shop’s contribution to a circular economy; how it makes sustainable contributions to challenging discrimination in the world of publishing, design and craft.

Our plan is an evolving one which we will continue to add to and adapt as a result of learning along the way. We warmly welcome your comments and contributions so please do feel free to contact us at:

Last updated March 2023

What we mean by the words equality, diversity and inclusivity at the SLG

At the SLG, the word diversity is used to refer to a wide range of human characteristics, seen and unseen, which we are born with or have acquired. This may include our gender identity, sexuality, race or ethnicity, socio-economic background, disability, neurodiversity, health, age and religion.

The word inclusive is used to mean that we foster varied perspectives and experiences, encouraging open conversations and active listening practices. We believe everybody is entitled to feel welcome, comfortable and safe at the SLG, confident to express their authentic selves.

We are committed to achieving diversity across our staff, board, programmes and audiences, to reflect society. Our imperative is to create a working environment that enables us to challenge structures and practices, to ensure that diversity is at the forefront of our organisation. We want to be fully inclusive and to proactively counter discrimination. All staff and board members receive training and support to ensure we are able to achieve this.

Inclusion, diversity and equalities forums at the SLG: Equalities advisory committee

The Equalities Advisory Committee currently comprises four SLG Board Members (Joy Gregory, Serge Ramin, Myriam Semere and Cleo Soanes) and is attended by the Director and Deputy Director, with occasional input from other SLG staff, and invited participants who will be paid for their time.

The Committee meets every 12 weeks to review inclusion and diversity practices and policies at the SLG. It also provides a confidential, safe place for staff to report to the four Board members any incidences of discrimination they have experienced or witnessed at work.

The Committee is formed to ensure the SLG is better able to uphold Equality, Diversity and Inclusion policy and respond effectively to breaches of policy. The Committee aims to embed a zero-tolerance approach and to ensure fair investigation wherever necessary, to hold the SLG and/or individuals within the organisation to account.

Equality, diversity and inclusion meetings

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion meetings are held every other month. They are open to all SLG staff and are always attended by representatives from the Senior Management team and staff teams across the SLG. Specific issues relating to Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion are addressed in terms of best practice and policy creation across all aspects and locations of the SLG’s activities.

Policy formed in Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Meetings is held to account by the Equalities Advisory Committee.



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