Next week Leeds Poverty Truth Commission will be making a deputation to a full Leeds City Council meeting to present our Humanifesto to all 99 of the city’s councillors.
In anticipation of this, and following the pledges made by our Commissioners at the end of our Humanifesto Launch last month, we are asking people all across the city to make their own #PovertyPledge via social media over the coming week.
To kick us off, Commissioner Andrea Cowans has written a short blog with her pledge (pledges can be long, but if you can make yours a 280 character tweet, all the better for sharing!). So, over to Andrea….
Andrea Cowans (Director of Student Life, Leeds City College) – My poverty truth humanifesto pledge
I see around me the dehumanising effects of poverty and can be frustrated at how much change needs to take place even in our compassionate city. I pledge to make a difference through my work, and following my experience with the Poverty Truth Commission, always look at things from different perspectives and listen to these when I make decisions. At Leeds City College I will take account of the factors that may stop people from studying at college. I will make it easier for students who need them to get travel passes, meals during the day and the equipment they need to succeed in their education. I will continue with the campaign against Period Poverty by providing sanitary products to students who need them. I will encourage our suppliers to make our resources go further, so more students can benefit from support. I will consider isolation and loneliness when planning policies, services and events and make it a priority that every student at our college is helped to make friends and connections with whom they can share their experiences, especially during their first few weeks on their course.
Within our college I will promote respect and dignity in everything we do: our teaching, learning, enrichment, safeguarding, work placement, student voice and every day student experience. I will champion equality, diversity and inclusion not only for characteristics protected in law, but for those who may be vulnerable because of their circumstances, live in poverty or be unable to access services as well as others. I will find the space and joy to celebrate achievements, however small or insignificant to many, but because the achievement of our every day heroes has meaning and significance to those who share their lives and experiences.
To raise awareness of the impacts of poverty I will run workshops for staff which help them identify the small ways they can adapt their practice to be inclusive and more humanising for all.