Equality, Diversion & Inclusion Policy

The Irish Traditional Music Archive values equality, diversity and inclusion in all aspects of its operations.

This policy reflects ITMAs commitment to these values. It includes extracts from governing documentation demonstrating this commitment, and the practical steps taken to implement them. This policy document is framed in the context of the Arts Council’s Equality, Human Rights and Diversity Policy and Strategy (2019).

As an Employer:

The ITMA Employee handbook has detailed policies on Equal Opportunities and Dignity at Work. The procedures listed in this document include the following:

Access to Employment:

  • All recruitment and selection competitions will be open to all suitably qualified applicants.
  • Recruitment decisions will be made against specified criteria as required for the particular vacancy.
  • ITMA will seek to ensure that the recruitment process is free from any direct or indirect discrimination on any of the nine grounds.
  • Every applicant, external or internal, will be assessed against fair and consistent criteria relating to the job.
  • Where an applicant indicates that they have special needs, to facilitate their participation in the recruitment and selection process, reasonable accommodation will be provided, subject to this not imposing a disproportionate burden.

Access to Training and Experience:

  • Training will be provided on the basis of individual needs and the requirements of the post held by the Employee.
  • Selection for training will not be based on any of the nine grounds.
  • Where an individual’s disability impedes their ability to fully participate and engage in training activities, reasonable accommodation will be provided subject to this not imposing a disproportionate burden.
  • Although every effort will be made to arrange training to facilitate attendance by part-time Employees, there is an expectation that part-time Employees will make themselves available, from time to time, to attend training outside their normal hours of work.

Conditions of Employment:

  • Terms and conditions of employment will be applied fairly to all Employees, with no reference to any of the grounds in the Employment Equality Acts.
  • ITMA seeks to provide equal pay for like work.
  • ITMA endeavours to provide a work environment free from bullying, harassment or sexual harassment.

Promotion and Re-grading:

  • There will be equality of opportunity at all stages of the promotions and/or re-grading process.
  • Selection for promotion will be based on defined criteria related to the requirements of the post, and no reference will be made to the nine grounds in the selection process.

Classification of Posts:

  • Gender neutral job titles will be used and no reference will be made to any of the other eight grounds in classifying positions.

Reasonable Accommodation:

  • Reasonable accommodation shall be provided in order to facilitate a person with a disability to apply for positions with ITMA, to attend for interview, to engage in employment and to participate in training activities as applicable.
  • This commitment is subject to such reasonable accommodation not presenting a disproportionate burden on ITMA, unless otherwise deemed appropriate.

Equal Status:

  • No person will be discriminated against or treated adversely while availing of goods or services provided by ITMA, except where this is legally permitted and undertaken with a legitimate aim. No person availing of goods or services should be subject to harassment or sexual harassment while availing of these.

These policies are underpinned by ITMA’s disciplinary and grievance procedures.

For the Public:

ITMA understands ‘Irish traditional music’ as a broad term which encompasses oral-tradition song, instrumental music and dance of many kinds and periods.

It interprets the term in the widest possible sense, and always tries to include rather than exclude material.

That same inclusiveness underpins the ethics of the organisation.

ITMA provides its services to the wider traditional music community, a community that crosses borders, ages, genders, religions and races.

The above statements are taken directly from the stated Ethical Values of ITMA. This document is publicly available on the ITMA website and speaks to the inclusivity that is at the heart of the organisation.

For the Future:

ITMA’s strategic plan (2019-2023) is available on the ITMA website, and in this document the ideas of diversity, equality and inclusiveness are central themes.

The document states that a core value of the organisation is to “embrace diversity and inclusiveness” (p. 6).

It also states that a priority for ITMA’s content in this period is to “fill knowledge gaps in our collections to reflect the rich diversity of the practice of Irish traditional music including the representation of gender, language, and ethnicity.” (p. 8).

The plan aims to “expand our footprint and presence within Ireland and internationally and ensure diverse communities are aware of ITMA’s services and resources.” (p. 8).

Collecting projects will include “under-represented geographical areas, instruments and genres” (p. 9).


The values outlined above are stated in ITMA’s governance documentation, but they are also reflected in practices and procedures within the organisation. For example:

  • Diversity is an integral part of ITMA’s event programming.
  • Gender balance is considered in every aspect of ITMA’s work, from appointing Board Members to featuring artists on the ITMA website.
  • ITMA’s field-recording strategy explicitly targets diverse groups and individuals, who may be otherwise under-represented.
  • ITMA actively develops working partnerships with relevant representative organisations, in order to create increased opportunities for artists and individuals experiencing disadvantage and marginalisation.
  • The Board of ITMA is regularly updated on actions relating to equality, diversity and inclusivity.

A member of staff has responsibility for ensuring equality, diversity and inclusivity are at the heart of everything that ITMA does.

This document was reviewed by the Board Governance Committee and approved in December 2021.