New BBC Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group to meet today

I want to support the BBC’s ambition to be the most creative broadcaster in the world. To do this it needs to truly reflect the diversity of all its audiences, both on screen and behind the camera.Tom Ilube, Non-Executive Director
Date: 01.05.2019     Last updated: 01.05.2019 at 09.32
Category: Corporate
A refreshed Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group will help advise the BBC on how it portrays all of the UK’s communities on air, and represents them in its workforce.

The Group, which meets for the first time today, will include internal and external members. It will be chaired on behalf of Director-General Tony Hall by BBC Non-Executive Director Tom Ilube, with BBC Non-Executive Director Tanni Grey-Thompson as co-sponsor.

The external members, who have a wide range of knowledge and experiences of the media industry, are:

  • Adele Patrick - Co-founder of the Glasgow Women's Library
  • Geoff Norcott - comedian
  • June Sarpong - presenter
  • Solomon Elliott - Chief Executive of The Student View
  • Tanya Motie - Former BBC One and BBC Three Channel Executive

The internal members are:

  • Bob Shennan - BBC Group Managing Director
  • Charlotte Moore - BBC Director Content
  • Valerie Hughes D’Aeth - BBC Chief HR Officer

Director-General Tony Hall and current BBC Board member Tanni Grey-Thompson and will also regularly attend the Group.

The BBC has also advertised two jobs; Director of Creative Diversity and Head of Workforce Diversity and Inclusion. These roles will support the work of the Diversity Advisory Group when they are in post.

The Group will help fulfil the BBC’s fourth public purpose, which requires the Corporation to 'reflect, represent and serve the diverse communities of all of the United Kingdom’s nations and regions and, in doing so, support the creative economy across the United Kingdom'.

It will be invited to support, challenge and monitor the BBC’s future work in this area.

The Group announced today is a refresh of the Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group, which was set up in 2014.

Director General Tony Hall says: “The BBC must represent the widest range of stories, faces and voices on screen, on air and behind the camera. The combined knowledge, experience and skills of our new Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group will provide a fresh perspective on our ambitions. Tom Ilube has a great passion for diversity and inclusion, so I’m delighted that he is taking up this role for the BBC.”

Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group Tom Ilube says: "I want to support the BBC’s ambition to be the most creative broadcaster in the world. To do this it needs to truly reflect the diversity of all its audiences, both on screen and behind the camera. The new Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group will have some very honest and open conversations about where we are now and where we need to be. I can’t wait to get started."

The new Diversity Advisory Group has been created for a two-year period initially.

Notes to Editors
The Director of Creative Diversity is a new role which will report into new BBC Group Managing Director Bob Shennan, and work closely with senior leaders responsible for output across the BBC.

The Head of Workforce Diversity and Inclusion will report into Chief HR Officer Valerie Hughes D’Aeth, and replaces the Head of Diversity, Inclusion and Succession role vacated earlier this year.

In recent years the BBC has made great strides in improving on and off air representation. The broadcaster’s Annual Plan for 2019/20 showed that 15.2 percent of the BBC’s workforce are now from a BAME background – up from 14.8 percent in 2018. The BBC is also meeting its 2020 targets for disabled and LGBTQ+ staff.

Increasing representation of BAME and women in senior leadership remains a priority. Progress is being made but more needs to be done, particularly at the very highest executive levels. BAME staff in leadership roles are at 11.4 percent, up from 10.4 percent and women now fill 43.2 percent of leadership roles at the BBC - up from 42.1 percent. We have introduced a new target for the BBC Executive Committee and all divisional boards to have two BAME members by the end of 2020.

Creative diversity and making amazing programmes for TV, radio and online for all audiences is the BBC’s number one priority. Diversity of voices, opinions, stories, geographies and communities is at the heart of this, demonstrated by forthcoming programmes including Gentlemen Jack in Drama and Ru Paul’s Drag Race UK in Entertainment.

Pictured L-R: Tanya Motie, Solomon Elliott, June Sarpong, Geoff Norcott, Adele Patrick

RM