British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Jeremy Hunt has initiated a reverse mentoring scheme at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, FCO, for ethnic minority staff.
The program will pair in same department, senior colleagues with ethnic minority staff in junior cadre to help have a clearer view on ideas and tact among the middle and senior class.
Mr. Hunt said: “In the twenty-first century it is essential that our diplomats look more like our country as a whole. Especially when 2 of Britain are greatest assets are our diversity and deep inter-country ties.”
“Despite the improvements we’ve made on improving overall diversity, there remains a stubborn problem in improving racial diversity at the Foreign Office at senior grades, particularly amongst black staff.”
“Our reverse mentoring scheme will be a practical way for us to challenge stereotypes and improve diversity. It will help us use the fantastic people the FCO employs to forge stronger connections and boost our prosperity.”
The formal statement was made following the a new foreign office report, ‘Black skin, Whitehall: Race and the Foreign Office, 1945 to 2018’. A report that penetrates into 70–year history of ethnic minority staff in the department.
Statistics shows that ethnic minority staff make up 13.4% of Foreign Office staff, while 62.5% of ones that declared their heritage have spent 10 years or more stagnant in lowest grades without promotion as to 47% of all staff.
The scheme will educate leaders on partiality along the lines of race, gender, class and educational background which could cloud the sense of judgement in recognizing talents, and by neglecting staff from the ethnic minority in junior grade. The scheme is expected tto create leaders andd mentors required to launch an organization forward.
The program is expected to create a effective representation of the ethnic minority group in the FCO workplace, on the FCO board, continuing schools, university and so on.
As FCO increases it commitment in the areas of gender equality and race bonding to create an all-inclusive workplace, the Business In The Community, BITC, diversity benchmark awarded the organization a silver and gold in both gender and race respectively.
The mentoring scheme is expected to commence in 2019 and run for 12-months.As the Foreign Office keeps progressing in female diversity. It has seen 32% in third of mission are headed by women, which rises by 190% since 2008.
British PM, Theresa May had in October 2018 launched a campaign called Race at Work Charter which allow top businesses adhere to laws that will move forward the recruitment and progression of ethnic minority employees, including reverse mentoring.