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24 May 24 Company news

Auto Trader celebrates Black Inclusion Week


Last week was Black Inclusion Week and here at Auto Trader we marked the week long initiative with a number of events to celebrate, support and empower Black individuals and communities.

The first of our events saw us welcome Black students from Trinity High School in Manchester for an insights day at Auto Trader’s head office supported by Black employees from across the business. The event was a collaboration between Auto Trader, the Ethnicity Network and Manchester Digital and students were given the opportunity to learn more about coding, data analysis and consumer discussions, along with exploring other aspects of both the tech and automotive industry.

In addition to this, Auto Trader hosted a learning hub during Black Inclusion Week for the Open University Black Leadership Empowerment Programme (BLEP) programme. As part of the learning hub, Auto Trader welcomed former Manchester United and Manchester City footballer Anthony Whelan to its offices for a keynote talk. Anthony delivered an inspiring talk about his career journey transitioning from the world of football to the realms of social work and academia. He discussed the invaluable support he received from his peers, which enabled him to overcome the challenges of racism and discrimination especially being the only Black student in both his school and his team. Through his story, he also shared insights on leadership, teamwork, and resilience.

Auto Trader has been working closely with the Open University, Manchester Airport Group and The Princes Trust over the last 18 months on the first of its kind programme which emerged in response to racial inequalities during the pandemic and highlighted in the 2020 Black Lives Matter protests’ call for racial equality.

The programme looks to support people under the age of 30, on low income, and without a higher qualification to enable them to access further studies and/or career growth. The aim of the programme is to enhance the leadership skills of Black individuals and increase the representation, influence and voice of Black people in workplaces and society.

Sophie Penrose, Ethnicity Network Lead at Auto Trader commented, ‘We were delighted to once again celebrate Black Inclusion Week and give our staff and the local community the opportunity to learn more about the achievements and impact that Black people across the UK have in society. At Auto Trader we’re proud to have a diverse and inclusive culture where we actively work to ensure that everybody can thrive and be at their best. It was great to see our incredible staff actively involved in panels during the week and sharing their career stories and experiences with Black students from the local community. In celebrating Black Inclusion Week, we hope that the significance of representation and visibility will inspire and empower both Black students and staff to reach their full potential.’

As part of Auto Trader’s commitment to making a difference in the community, Auto Trader are sponsoring the places of six Black learners for the Open University BLEP from the local community and have also collaborated with Black Inclusion Week to create a guide that will help other employers run similar experience days in their local communities.

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