Brighton University advises staff not to use word 'Christmas'

(Photo: University of Brighton)

Guidelines sent to staff at the University of Brighton recently advised against using the word 'Christmas'.

The Inclusive Language Guidance cautioned staff against "using Christian-centric language".

As examples, the nine-page document cited the words "Christmas" and "Christian name".

The guidelines also suggested that the phrase "Christmas closure period" be replaced with "Winter closure period".

Staff were told that "inappropriate language and discrimination can be targeted at people with any faith or no faith".

After coming under criticism, a spokesperson for the university clarified that the guidance was advice and that the words were not banned.

"Words are not 'banned' at Brighton, and neither is Christmas – as is clear from the decorations and Christmas trees in our buildings and across our campuses," they said.

Commenting on the guidance, The Christian Institute's Simon Calvert dismissed the suggestions as "barmy".

"These kinds of barmy suggestions come up nearly every Christmas. Thankfully, the vast majority of people are far too sensible to pay any attention to them," he said.

"Staff and students at Brighton University are perfectly free to wish one another a Merry Christmas if they want to."