Unconscious Bias Training

What is UB?

Unconscious bias (UB) is often defined as a systematic thinking error. It is our unintended people preference; it happens automatically and is triggered by our brain making quick judgments and assessments of people and situations.
UB is caused by a variety of external factors such as our background, cultural environment, and personal experiences. Everyone has it, but that does not make us bad; it makes us human. While we cannot completely rid ourselves of unconscious bias, we can learn how to recognize it and lessen its impact in all interpersonal interactions in everyday life or in the workplace.
Biases, conscious or unconscious, are not limited to ethnicity alone. Though racial bias and discrimination is well documented, biases may exist toward and from any social group and personal category. One’s age, gender, identity, physical abilities, religion, sexual orientation, weight, and many other characteristics are subject to bias. Ethnicity, is the particular (not exclusive) lens that we choose to enter this conversation.

What you'll learn?

UB is far more prevalent than conscious prejudice and often incompatible with our conscious values. Certain scenarios can activate unconscious attitudes and beliefs. They cannot be accessed through introspection. Through our UB workshops we will help you move from awareness to action, learning how to interrupt bias and leverage the full potential of all of God’s children within Leicester diocese.
Build awareness to understand what unconscious bias is and why it matters. Understand the impact of unconscious bias at work and the impact it has on your decision making. Develop skills to help you recognize and take action to manage bias. Create a goal-setting plan to work toward inclusive leadership by managing your unconscious bias. Unconscious bias Guide provided to all participants; when possible, tailored to context.

Who is this for?

Ideally we would hope that everyone within Leicester diocese would have the opportunity to participate in a UB workshop. More realistically, we suggest that UB training be made available to:
- all licensed, authorised, and commissioned ministers
- anyone in a senior management role (especially if involved in recruitment), and leading a strategic diocesan project
- Anyone in key diocesan governance body (e.g. DBF, DBE, Bishop’s Council, Youth Council, and any other relevant body)
- any PCC (especially before the appointment of a new minister)
- any group, church, team wanting to raise awareness and set actionable goals that would lead to greater diversity and inclusion in their mission and ministry. 

Why this training matters

Unconscious bias training is an important first step in developing heighten levels of cultural awareness. This training enables participants to begin to consciously register patterns of behaviours and opinions that are premised on unconscious biases or learned stereotypes. The course provides participants with a lens in order to identify these areas in one’s own life and provides the tools for individuals to assess how to make adjustments. The diocese of Leicester remains committed to offering this training as part of a wider package of training programmes and project initiatives designed to promote racial equality and fulfil its safeguarding commitments. To ensure that churches are places which welcome all and provide a safe environment in which everyone is able to belong and feels free to worship. In acknowledging that unconscious bias training cannot, as a single measure, achieve racial equality; the Church is committed to tackling wider cultural change by dismantling existing structures and practices that disadvantage minority ethnic groups. The dissemination of anti-racism training through web based resources and inter-cultural awareness courses forms an integral part of this work. It is anticipated that these additional elements will be rolled out during the course of the year.

Who will deliver the workshop?

We have built internal capacity, and have four trainers who will help deliver UB workshop across the diocese. We hope that, in time, we will be able to build up our team of trainers to attend to the anticipated increased need for UB workshops.

When and where will it be?

The next training session will take place on Thursday 18th April, from 6 pm to 9 pm, at St Martin House.
Places are limited, and will be on a first come, first served basis via Dinta.Chauhan@LeicesterCofE.org. Further dates will be added later in the year, so do keep an eye on this webpage or contact Dinta for more information.

How long and how much?

Each session delivered by our diocesan team will typically run over half a day (3hrs) and cater for up to 20 people at one time. Costs will typically involve venue hire, hospitality, and (re)production of training material (where applicable). However, if any particular group wanted to use the expertise of external facilitators, they could be directed to trusted organisations. Inevitably this option comes at a significant cost.


In order to create real change, we need to understand Unconscious Bias as a fundamental social justice issue that gives birth to all kinds of -isms in our society. Awareness alone is not enough to create culture change. Our workshops will not solely focus on concepts and theories that may be intellectually stimulating, but will look at integrating actionable recommendations relevant to each context


Here are some videos to help you think about the issues. We hope to be able to provide more video and online training resources here soon.

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