Ipswich: UCS bosses accused of race discrimination

A LEADING academic has accused bosses at University Campus Suffolk of denying her a senior post because she is black.

Dr Erica Joslyn was assistant dean of the school of social sciences at the Ipswich-based institution when she applied for one of four heads of school positions there in May last year.

The Caribbean-born 53-year-old, who lives in Ipswich, yesterday told an employment tribunal in Bury St Edmunds how she was left “disappointed and upset” at learning she had lost out on one of the posts, while two of her white colleagues had been promoted.

Dr Joslyn, who started out as a midwife, claims it was part of a “process” of racial discrimination against her.

The university denies the accusation.

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Giving evidence, Dr Joselyn, who holds degrees from the universities of Middlesex, Ulster and Birmingham, and who started work at Suffolk College (the forerunner of UCS) in 1990, said her qualifications and skills had been “neither recognised nor rewarded”.

She told how she was informed on May 20 last year that she had not been appointed to a head of school position but was offered a programme area director position.

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“I was very disappointed and upset,” she said. “Two colleagues had been promoted and both were less academically qualified than myself.”

The head of school of social sciences and business position, which Dr Joslyn had most wanted, remained unfilled and was later re-advertised.

However, Dr Joslyn told how she did not apply for the post because it would be judged by the same panel as previously.

Addressing the tribunal, Dr Joslyn claimed the May recruitment process had attached less importance to academic qualifications than the November one.

She said the effect of this was to “discriminate against” her because that was where her strengths lay.

However, the tribunal was also told how two other who were white British in origin had also missed out on getting the head of school of social science and business position.

It also emerged that one of the eight people who originally applied for the four head of school posts, and who was white British, was subsequently made redundant.

The tribunal continues.

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