Merton has developed a Freedom of Information publication scheme that follows a common pattern adopted by a number of Oxford Colleges, written in compliance with the FOIA 2000.
Through this scheme, the College endeavours to be as transparent as possible about its activities while at the same time recognising that sensitive material, such as that relating to individuals or which involves confidential commercial considerations, cannot be made publicly available.
Freedom of Information Requests should be addressed to Charles Alexander.
Equality Act 2010
Under the Equality Act 2010 Merton has a general duty to have due regard to the need to eliminate discrimination, advance equality of opportunity, and foster good relations between different people when carrying out their activities. The College has established an Equality Committee to help it comply with the requirements of the Act. We have a specific equality duty to publish relevant, proportionate information showing compliance with the Equality Duty on a yearly basis, starting in January 2012.
Equality data includes information relating to the people among our employees, our students and others people who receive a service from the College who share a relevant protected characteristic. Characteristics protected under the Equality Act are: age, disability, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation. They include marriage and civil partnership in respect of the need to eliminate discrimination in employment.
There are limits on the information which we can publish. The need to protect individual privacy means we are not able to publish information on groups of fewer than ten people or in other cases where there would be a risk of identification of individuals. Moreover, we do not currently routinely capture information on all of the protected characteristics. We are committed to improving the quality and range of our equality data over time. As a first step towards this, we are conducting a voluntary survey of our current employees to understand better the composition and diversity of our workforce.
Merton is one college within the University of Oxford. Overall information for the University on gender, race and disability can be found on the University's Equality and Diversity pages.
Merton’s 2012 Equality Objectives can be found here.
Merton College aims to provide an inclusive environment which promotes equality, values diversity and maintains a working, learning and social environment in which the rights and dignity of all its staff and students are respected to assist them in reaching their full potential. The College will work to remove any barriers which might deter people of the highest potential and ability from applying to Oxford, either as staff or students.
No prospective or actual student or member of staff will be treated less favourably than any other, whether before, during or after their study or employment at Merton College on one or more of the following grounds (subject to any legal constraints and in relation to the protected characteristics laid out in the Equality Act 2010): age; colour; disability; ethnic origin; gender reassignment, marital or civil partnership status; nationality; national origin; parental status; pregnancy or childbirth; race; religion or belief; sex; sexual orientation; or length or type of contract (e.g. part-time or fixed-term). The College has approved separate policies for race, disability and gender to meet the specific obligations of the Race Relations (Amendment) Act, the Disability Discrimination Act 2005 and the Equality Act 2006.
With regard to staff, this policy applies to (but is not limited to) advertising of jobs and recruitment and selection, to training and development, to opportunities for promotion, to conditions of service, benefits, facilities and pay, to health and safety, to conduct at work, to grievance and disciplinary procedures and to termination of employment.
With regard to students, this policy applies to (but is not limited to) admissions, to teaching, learning and research provision, to scholarships, grants and other awards under the College’s control, to student support, to College accommodation and other facilities, to health and safety, to personal conduct and to student complaints and disciplinary procedures.
In order to realise its commitment, the College will:
It is the responsibility of the Governing Body to provide mechanisms through which the College’s strategic objectives for equality and diversity can be delivered and also to work in partnership with the University to agree a fair and equitable division of responsibility under current and future equality legislation.
The Equality Committee has the responsibility of considering all existing and emerging equality legislation with a view to identifying relevant issues, which are then translated into key College policies for approval by the Governing Body, facilitates consultation with specific groups of staff and students, provides monitoring of key strategic issues and also drafts publications for approval by the Governing Body as appropriate.
The Senior Tutor (with respect to academic matters) and the Domestic Bursar (with respect to non-academic matters) are responsible for the day to day implementation and delivery of the College’s strategic objectives for equality and diversity in accordance with the guidance attached to this policy.
The Estates department has primary responsibility for facilitating the accessibility of the College’s buildings for disabled users, in collaboration with the Domestic Bursar.
The Harassment Advisers may provide informal advice in the first instance to any member of staff or student prior to bringing any complaint or grievance about harassment.
This policy applies to all members of the College community, both students and staff, whether permanent, temporary, casual, part-time or on fixed-term contracts, to job applicants, to student applicants, current and former students, to associate members and to visitors to the College.
These members of the College community have a duty to act in accordance with this policy, and therefore to treat colleagues with respect at all times and not to discriminate against or harass other students or members of staff, whether junior or senior to them.
The College expects all its staff and students to take personal responsibility for familiarising themselves with this policy and to conduct themselves in an appropriate manner at all times to respect equality of opportunity for all staff, students, applicants and visitors. The College regards any breach of this policy by any employee(s) or student(s) as a serious matter to be dealt with through its agreed procedures and which may result in disciplinary action.
Any student or member of staff who has a complaint concerning a breach of this policy may bring such a complaint in accordance with the procedures laid down in the College Handbook and Staff Handbook.
The College's Code of Practice on Staff Recruitment and Selection.
The College Handbook contains:
Download the College Handbook [Adobe .pdf].