Our Inclusion, Equality and Diversity Commitment
Colchester Operatic Society wants to proceed as a diverse and inclusive organisation, accessible, welcoming and truly representative of the population of Colchester and its surrounding areas, offering equality of opportunity to our current and potential audiences, creatives and membership.
- The Creative Case– with a diverse membership, we will ensure the Society creates high-quality, engaging entertainment that is honest, reflective and rewarding for its audiences and membership. We recognise that diverse teams in all areas of our activity will ensure the Society continues to be effective, adaptive and resilient
- The Business Case– since Colchester Operatic Society was formed over 90 years ago, audiences and society have changed and we want to reach the audiences and members of the future, recognising that our loyal supporters continue to expect best practice in diversity and inclusion
- The Moral Case –Creating a diverse and inclusive community of members and audiences has always been important to the Society. However, in hindsight we are aware that we haven’t always got it right. Therefore, we will continue to review and improve our processes and understanding to ensure best practice.
For our 2020-25 planning, we are focusing on improving four key areas:
- Ethnic background – seeking continuous improvement in visible representation and diversity across our membership and creative teams. For example, continuing to form strong relationships with the diverse local community groups of Colchester.
- Social background – improving accessibility for audiences and members from the widest possible social backgrounds. For example, by reviewing our ticket pricing structure and exploring bursary schemes for members.
- Gender, Age and Physical appearance – ensuring these factors do not limit equality of opportunity across our membership and creative teams. For example, considering non-traditional casting decisions.
- Disability – ensuring equality of opportunity, reaching wider audience groups and promoting accessibility to our rehearsals, events and productions whether onstage, backstage or offstage. For example, working closely with local venues to ensure accessibility where possible.
The plan will be led by an Inclusion, Equality and Diversity Lead from Colchester Operatic Society Executive Committee and a team of appointed Equality & Inclusion Champions from all sub-committees and within specific areas of our Society and supported by advocates from both Colchester Operatic Society and CO2. Our Inclusion, Equality and Diversity Strategy sets out our long term aims and an action plan to support delivery over the next five years.
As a start to this plan we have created and published a NEW Inclusion, Equality and Diversity policy for our members and updated our complaints policy and procedures, which can both be found on our policies page.
“I am proud to be driving the Society on this journey of positive change. I would like to thank all those who have contributed to this new commitment and who have pledged to help move our Society forwards with regard to Inclusion, Equality and Diversity over the coming years.” Katie Cutmore, Chair of Colchester Operatic Society