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Friday, 2 December 2022

Social Justice Commitments

Since the summer of 2020, the team at Third Angel have individually and collectively been listening, learning and reflecting on how racism continues to impact upon our sector and our society, and the role that we can play in making positive change. These conversations have largely been taking place behind the scenes, and it is time we started to share where our learning has taken us and how we see this work continuing.

During this time, we have received training from brap and MA Consultancy; explored the Race at Work Charter, Race Equality Code and Inc Arts Unlock toolkit; established an Equity Working Group led by our trustees; reviewed and updated all of our recruitment paperwork and processes for both staff and trustees; appointed four new trustees bringing new perspectives into our decision making; given time to thinking about and discussing the role we want to play when others in our sector experience discrimination and injustice, and how we can learn from the mistakes of other organisations.

Our conversations around racial equity have inevitably led to us thinking more about the experiences of people with other marginalised identities: those who are d/Deaf or disabled, or who identify as LGBTQ+. So although our focus over the last two years has very much been on issues of race, the outcome has been a sharpening and refocusing of the company’s values and beliefs around social justice as a whole. The first step that we are going take in communicating our journey is to share our Social Justice Commitments

This statement reflects a shift in our approach. We understand that striving for equality or equal opportunities is not sufficient to make the changes we believe are needed in society, we need to step up and challenge the structures that uphold racism and other forms of oppression. This means striving for equity, advocating for social justice and taking specific actions on our journey to being an anti-racist, disability and neurodiversity positive, and trans-inclusive organisation. We are taking, and will continue to take, time to read, listen, learn and digest the experiences and knowledge of those whose experiences are different to ours. This is a long term commitment to change, for our organisation, our leadership and our practice.

We welcome your feedback and invite you to hold us to account on these commitments as we continue to learn.



·      to be an anti-racist organisation – this is an active position that requires us to take action to dismantle the structures that uphold racism and is different to being passively ‘not racist’

·      to be disability / neurodiversity positive

·      to create welcoming inclusive spaces, where people feel safe to be their authentic selves, where conversations about race and other aspects of identity are normalised and encouraged, and where everyone feels able to ask for what they need in order to do their best work

·      to send a clear message about who is welcome in our organisation

·      to have a wider range of perspectives and experiences in our discussions and decision making

·      to understand what we might be doing (or not doing) that could make some people feel as though our work / our organisation is not for them

·      to approach our work that is targeted at marginalised or underrepresented groups in a way that is ‘with not for’, prioritising co-production / collaboration in the design and delivery of activities


·      reflect on whose voices we are amplifying and why

·      identify the places and times where we need to slow down, interrogate our biases and structural advantages, and be mindful and honest about the reasons behind the decisions that we make

·      create more opportunities to work with people with global majority heritage as peers and mentors, rather than as recipients of services

·      create regular opportunities to hold each other to account

·      ensure that no-one is made to feel that their contribution or presence is tokenistic, or that they are being expected to be representative of anyone other than themselves

·      seek feedback from a wider range of sources about how we present ourselves / who feels included or excluded by our presentation


·      that we will need to take more risks than we are comfortable with

·      that we are sometimes going to get things wrong and be honest and transparent when this happens

·      that this may be disruptive to our normal working practice, but that long term genuine change will take time and hard work

There's lots more information about making and touring Third Angel projects 2008-2017 on our original blog, and 2017-2023 on the blog on this site.