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March 23, 2021

Spark Newsletter 23/03/21


Hi everyone. We hope you are all doing ok at the moment and finding ways to pass the time. I (Schani) have sold my house and am preparing to move over Easter. It has given me another focus over the current situation and has certainly kept me busy!


Spark! members social meet up

During our last social meeting we discussed two main topics – the recent Pay Gap report and also how to spend group funds. There were some open and frank discussions about the pay gap and questions as to why there was more disparity as people with disabilities rose the managerial pay spine. We discussed how some senior staff may not be disclosing a disability and the reasons that may lead to this situation. There was also a lack of perceived recognition that staff with disabilities were present at senior levels and a lack of accessible opportunities to address this situation. With regarding to spending funds we discussed training opportunities both for individuals in order to break through this glass ceiling, but also to raise awareness amongst staff in general.


Show your support for colleagues with disabilities.

As a result of the last Spark! meeting we discussed the need to raise awareness of people in the workforce who have disabilities. This would then enable better support and transparent conversations, allowing SHU to become more inclusive for all. One suggestion to show support and start building this awareness may come in the form of an addition to staff email signatures. An idea akin to the LGBT Allies scheme was discussed and was thought to be a way of showing your support, possibly disclosing  a disability and raising awareness of Disability in the workforce. We would like to know the wider views on this and any ideas you have about wording and how this can be achieved. Please feel free to drop us an email and contribute your ideas.


Fibromyalgia/ME/CFS Awareness day 12th May 2021

The next disability awareness campaign from the university will be for Fibromyalgia/ME/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome awareness day. HROD are looking for volunteers to help with plans for awareness raising events for this day. If you wish to share your stories or experiences of living with or supporting someone with one of these conditions please email and we can forward your details. Please also email if you wish to help organise or support the awareness raising effort.


​We are still looking for new committee members

​​If you would be interested in joining the committee please email us at We will invite you to the next committee meeting so you can come and see if it is something you would like to involved in further. We want to continue to grow and develop the network but we need more help to do this.


Best wishes

Schani and the Spark! Network Committee