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Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy

Introduction

Red River College is Manitoba’s largest institute of applied learning and the province’s only polytechnic with more than 22,000 individual registrants in over 200 full-time and part-time programs. These programs are offered throughout Manitoba at eight campuses. In addition, the College employs over 2000 people across the province making it one of Manitoba’s largest employers.  

RRC is committed to promoting equity and diversity, while fostering a culture of inclusion where all our students and staff feel valued, respected and included.  We are committed to developing a learning and working environment that is welcoming, accessible, respectful and engaging for all individuals. We are proud of the work we are doing in support of this goal, and to be recognized as one of Canada’s Best Diversity Employers five years running.

We believe what we are doing is working when it comes to fostering an environment where our diversity is one of our greatest strengths, but we also believe we can and must do more to expand and enhance initiatives supporting our College community, as well as to acknowledge and celebrate the unique differences that makes Red River College so special. 

The Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) strategy will support the expansion and embedding of diversity and inclusion practices into our College culture and catalyze change.  In the coming years we will work towards this objective through the development of innovative policies, programming, initiatives and strategies. 

Vision

  • To build an Equitable, Diverse and Inclusive College culture. 
  • To enhance and promote knowledge and literacy of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. 
  • To build a workforce that is representative of the available regional labour force. 
  • To remove barriers to access and establish systems, policies and practices that support the success of our College communities’ employment and academic goals. 

EDI Pillars

In executing our vision, we will build action plans focused on the following four pillars. Our actions will take both the student and employee experience into consideration.  

  1. Recruitment and Selection: is the attraction, selection and promotion of candidates for jobs within an organization. RRC is committed to ensuring that employment decisions are based on skill and ability, and that qualified applicants and employees have equal opportunities for employment. In addition, we are committed to creating opportunities to grow our diverse workforce and evaluate our employment processes for the removal of biases and barriers. 
  • Training and Development: is the process of imparting knowledge, skills, and concepts while influencing changes to attitude, culture and status quo. Effective organizational training develops the human capital of a company while helping employees succeed in their roles. RRC is committed to providing training and development opportunities that is accessible, relevant and inclusive to all staff (and students where applicable) while promoting the understanding and literacy of diversity related topics. 
  • Retention and Engagement: is the ability of an organization to retain the engagement of its workforce and talent over time. We are committed to building an engaging, inclusive and rewarding environment where all employees are empowered and set up for success. 
  • External Partnerships and Outreach: is to build meaningful relationships with external organizations/partners to further support and compliment the successful delivery of our EDI goals. 

2019/2020 Strategic Implementation Plan

This strategy is designed to span over 2019 and 2020. During Fall 2019, we have a college-wide Self-Identification campaign planned to obtain demographical equity data of students and staff to benchmark our current representation. After this data is gathered, we will meet with various departments and program areas to develop individualized EDI action plans. This may require some adaptation or customization in order to achieve the full inclusion of all areas of the College. 

The action plans will be focused to drive conversation around the four EDI pillars identified above. In these plans, we will outline concrete EDI goals along with established timelines for all stakeholders. 

Supplementary to this strategy, the College has an existing Accessibility Plan published in compliance with the Accessibility for Manitobans Act, 2016. During this period, we will revisit this plan to provide further support and direction for its successful execution. 

At the conclusion of 2020, we will report on progress made and re-evaluate both the EDI strategy and the Accessibility Action Plans for future sustainability. 

2019/2020 Key Deliverables

  1. Execute Self-Identification Campaign
  2. Analyze staff and student diversity demographical data 
  3. Launch the design of EDI Action Plans for the college 
  4. Establish regular reporting of progress – for both EDI and Accessibility Action Plans 

Appendix – Glossary of Terms

Diversity: includes all the different characteristics that make one individual or group different from another. While diversity is often used in reference to ethnicity and gender, we embrace a broader definition of diversity that also includes age, national origin, religion, disability, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, education, marital status, language, and physical appearance. Our definition also includes diversity of thought: ideas, perspectives, and values.

Equity: is fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement for all people, while at the same time striving to identify and eliminate barriers that have prevented the full participation of some groups. Improving equity involves increasing justice and fairness within the procedures and processes of institutions or systems, as well as potentially the distribution of resources.

Inclusion: is the act of creating environments in which any individual or group can be and feel welcomed, respected, supported, and valued to fully participate. An inclusive and welcoming climate embraces differences and offers respect for all people.