Diversity 'kite mark' for employers part of Blueprint to boost BME presence in PR

A diversity "kite mark" scheme for employers is part of a new "Blueprint" initiative from BME PR Pros - alongside schemes to promote leadership and attract new talent from black, Asian and ethnic minority backgrounds.

Elizabeth Bananuka: 'The Blueprint is for doers and the impatient, ready and willing to create change'
Elizabeth Bananuka: 'The Blueprint is for doers and the impatient, ready and willing to create change'

BME PR Pros, the group led by Elizabeth Bananuka that promotes BME diversity in comms, is to introduce the projects in the coming months.

The first, launching next spring and called The Xec, is a one-year leadership scheme for BME PR and comms professionals, with eight to 12 places available.

The second initiative, launching in autumn 2020, is called #CareerHack, a two- to three-day event for people from BME backgrounds who want a career in PR. It will include agency showcases, panel discussions, interactive workshops and a chance to meet recruiters. Recruiters will also be able to pitch directly to them.

Finally, The Blueprint kite mark, due next winter, will separate "the agencies and organisations that offer equality of opportunity, value diverse talent and invest in it, from those that don’t".

More details of the individual schemes are due to be unveiled nearer launch.

Bananuka said: "I’ll be rolling out a series of initiatives across the next three years aimed at ensuring talented BME PR Pros get the careers they deserve and the sector gets to benefit from their talent.

"Over the coming months I’ll be unveiling the consultants that fed into The Blueprint development, the advisors I’ll be working with other next couple of years and the non-exec directors I’ve appointed to provide strategic counsel. More importantly, I’ll be sharing the initiatives aimed at talented BME PR and comms pros at every stage of their career."

According to the CIPR State of the Profession 2019 report, 92 per cent of practitioners classify themselves as ‘white’, compared to 88 per cent in the previous year.

Bananuka added: "The Blueprint is about widening the sector’s talent pool, tackling the sector’s diversity and talent problem and not just attracting and attaining talent from black, Asian and ethnic minority backgrounds, but ensuring they have the opportunity to climb to the top of their chosen career ladders.

"With my diverse, talented and incredible advisors, the two powerhouses I’ve appointed as non-exec directors, key industry partners and unique collaborators, I have no doubt we can make a positive difference to the sector, organisations and the careers of talented black, Asian and ethnic minority comms and PR pros. The Blueprint isn’t a diversity initiative for the talkers or the patient. It’s for doers and the impatient, ready and willing to create change."

You can visit The Blueprint website here.

PRWeek partners with BME PR Pros on the BME Mentoring Scheme, which launched for the second year this spring.

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