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Parliament reaches out to BAME community with new roles

PARLIAMENT RECRUITMENT: Chi Ukachuku, a project manager in Parliament’s participation strategy team

PEOPLE FROM BAME backgrounds are being encouraged to attend a recruitment fair promoting a wide selection of the roles on offer at Parliament that will be held this week.

The recruitment fair will take place on Thursday (April 19) and will give attendees the opportunity to find out about the extensive range of openings that Parliament currently has.

Chi Ukachuku, a project manager in Parliament’s participation strategy team, which works to improve and facilitate public engagement, urged people not to let reports of Parliament’s lack of diversity to discourage them for finding out about the opportunities available.

He said: “Parliament’s a great place to work. It’s a really interesting and dynamic workplace. There are various people from various backgrounds here. There’s such a diversity of roles as well, so the politics isn’t necessarily reflective of what the organisation is because there’s a whole back office function – everything from finance, HR, learning and development, catering, research, heritage [and a] public engagement area as well.”

Ukachuku added: “There’s people from all various different backgrounds that work [here]. One of [Parliament’s] strategic aims is about being open and inclusive and improving its diversity.”

This is something that Jennifer Crook, head of diversity and inclusion, House of Commons echoed.

PICTURED: Jennifer Crook, head of diversity and inclusion, House of Commons

Crook said: “There’s issues around diversity, particularly as we move up the ladder, there’s definitely issues around diversity – particularly around race and ethnicity – but in terms of the broad picture, the representative picture of the house, we do quite well in terms of the BAME picture.”

The percentage of BAME employees in the House of Commons is 18%, a figure above the national average, Crook said.

Crook praised Parlireach for their work, which aims to improve the awareness and appreciation of different race, ethnicity and cultural heritage issues.

Ukachuku, who is also Parlireach’s reverse mentoring officer, said the body helps employees understand what it’s like being a person from a BAME background working in Parliament. He’s already seen impacts from his own experience of reverse mentoring – sessions where a junior member of staff mentors a senior member – citing his mentee quoting him in an important meeting on policy change.

Ukachuku encouraged people to attend the recruitment fair this week, describing it as an “opportunity to discover all the different roles and all the different career paths that you can have in Parliament”.

The Parliament recruitment fair takes place this Thursday (April 19) between 3 and 7pm in Westminster Hall. To find out more and to secure your free place click here.

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