UP Anti-Discrimination policy: Creating a safe environment for learning and working

Posted on February 14, 2020

Since universities are the microcosms of the environments within which they operate, these issues are not unique to the University of Pretoria. This is the reason why organisational polices should not and can never be separated from social issues. UP recently reviewed its policies on discriminatory practices and developed the Anti-Discrimination Policy, which is an all-encompassing policy that tackles issues of discrimination based on “race, gender, sex, pregnancy, marital status, ethnic or social origin, colour, sexual orientation, age, disability, religion, conscience, belief, culture, language, and birth; or other comparable grounds including country of origin, HIV status, socio-economic status, albinism, gender identity, gender expression, intersex status, class, political opinion, year of study, physical appearance, body shape, mental health status, or occupation (further in this policy referred to as prohibited grounds)”.

Another transformation policy that supports UP’s goals towards the eradication of discrimination is the Language Policy. It recognises the “intrinsic value of the diverse range of linguistic backgrounds that students and staff bring to the University and addresses historical injustices while promoting justice and equality for all”. This ensures that we create a comfortable environment where everyone can have a sense of belonging.

UP is committed to the prevention, redress and sanctioning of discriminatory practices as part of its transformation imperatives. Our anti-discrimination policy does not just serve the University in isolation, it filters into redressing societal ills. This is to ensure that we create a safe environment for learning and working, which is a basic necessity, and to foster academic excellence. We therefore employ a zero-tolerance approach towards discrimination of all kinds. The transformation Office of the University of Pretoria exists to serve the University community in all issues of social justice.

We work closely with Security Services for investigations of cases reported and we are situated at the Graduate Centre, room 2:61. Should you need any more information relating to any type of discrimination, do not hesitate to contact the Transformation Office by getting in touch with Sarah Matseke via [email protected] or 012 420 6797; or Stembiso Magagula via [email protected] or 012 420 6245.

- Author Sarah Matseke

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