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TPE launches ‘Neurodiversity Network Group’ during TPE Week of Inclusion

TransPennine Express (TPE) has announced the official launch of its ‘Neurodiversity Network Group’ as part of the trailblazing TPE Week of Inclusion.  

Committed to celebrating diversity and embracing individuality, TPE is celebrating its first ever ‘TPE Week of Inclusion’ and is keen to recognise the importance of neurodiversity representation in the workplace.

In the UK, one in seven people are neurodivergent, meaning that 15 per cent of Britain’s population is part of this group. Neurodivergent means that a person’s brain may function, process and learn information in a different way from someone who is “neurotypical”.

Elizabeth Williams, Public Relations Manager, said: “When I got diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) last year, I realised that there was a big gap in the information around neurodiversity. Like many people, I didn’t realise that there is a whole range of conditions such as autism, dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia and Tourette’s syndrome that also fall under the umbrella.

“In a bid to raise awareness, I worked with our Diversity and Inclusion Manager to set up a dedicated group of people who either fall under the neurodiversity umbrella or are enthusiastic about supporting those who do.

“We want to create an environment where every individual, regardless of neurodivergent characteristics, feels heard and celebrated for what they bring to TPE.”

TPE’s Neurodiversity Network Group has ten founding members, who live with conditions such as ADHD, autism, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and dyslexia. The group will share their experiences living with neurodiversity, encourage other colleagues to join, raise awareness for adjustments that can be made for colleagues and future applicants, and help guide TPE on how to be a more inclusive employer.

Harriet Harbidge, Diversity and Inclusion Manager at TransPennine Express, said: “We’re so excited to celebrate our first ever ‘TPE Week of Inclusion’.

“Officially launching our Neurodiversity Network Group is the first of many steps we will take to ensure all colleagues and customers who fall under the neurodiversity umbrella feel welcome and supported onboard our trains, in our stations, and at work.”

TPE is currently a Level 2 Disability Confident Employer and provides colleagues with ‘Neurodiversity Training’ – delivered by The Brain Trust – in a bid to best support current colleagues and raise awareness of the reasonable adjustments available.

Rail Minister Huw Merriman said: “I commend TPE for creating this Network to ensure neurodiversity is appropriately recognised in the workplace and throughout our rail network.

“I want our railways to be inclusive and accessible for everyone, and I champion this important step in helping both workers and passengers feel supported and heard.”

TPE recently released its blueprint to make journeys better which includes its aim to embrace equality, diversity and inclusion to build knowledge and confidence to foster and embed a companywide culture of inclusion.