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How we operate: Equality and diversity

Equality ensures that everyone is treated fairly, regardless of difference, and is given the opportunity to fulfil their potential in life.

About Us

For SFC, this means making equality central to our policy development, decision making and delivery to support colleges and universities, their staff and students, and to improve life chances for all.

Over the next 10 years, we want to transform the economic and social well-being of individual learners and Scotland as a whole. In doing so, we will make a significant contribution to the Scottish Government’s strategies for investment, innovation, inclusive growth, and internationalisation and, ultimately, its goal of creating a more successful country.

To help us advance equality and diversity, we work closely with the Equality Unit and Sponsorship Teams in the Scottish Government, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) and other partners in the Non-departmental Public Bodies Equality Forum to strengthen our approach.

Memorandum of understanding between the Scottish Funding Council and the Equality and Human Rights Commission

Our duties

The Equality Act 2010 requires us to deliver on the Public Sector Equality Duty. SFC adheres to the Equality and Human Rights Commission which publishes Scotland-specific advice and guidance.

Our Equality Outcomes for 2017-21

Our Equality Outcomes are designed to support all protected characteristic groups: age; disability; gender reassignment; pregnancy and maternity; race; religion or belief (including lack of belief); socio-economic; sex and sexual orientation.

SFC policies and statutory reports

To comply with the Equality Act 2010, we report on progress to deliver our equality outcomes both externally, supporting the colleges and universities that we fund, and internally, as an employer.

Equality and Human Rights Impact Assessments

In 2015, we introduced human rights principles to our Equality Impact Assessment process. To ensure that we embed equality and diversity within our funding decisions, any application for SFC funding must include an Equality and Human Rights Impact Assessment (EHRIA). Equality is fully embedded in the reporting on the impact of our funding and our Outcome Agreement (OA) guidance clarifies the legal requirement for EHRIAs on OAs.

Go to our list of SFC Equality and Human Rights Impact Assessments.

British Sign Language (BSL)

To support the British Sign Language (Scotland) Act 2015, we have been working closely with the Scottish Government and the British Sign Language (BSL) community. Further information on our support for BSL.

Get involved

If you would like to share promising practice, or have any questions relating to equality and diversity at SFC, please contact Lynn Killick, tel: 0131 313 6698, email: