After working in academia and then in rugby league development and promotion, Julian
Harrison has spent the last eighteen years of his life working in community engagement,
development and in the specific areas of equality, diversity, community cohesion and
human rights. He was Lead Officer in these fields at Leicestershire County Council until
September 2015, when he left to pursue a new career as an independent equality and
He is currently working with the Centre for BME Health based at the Leicester Diabetes
Centre as well as the University of Leicester, where he has been providing guidance and
advice on equality and diverse community-related concerns and involving himself in some
specific work relating to mental health. His identity as a passionate campaigner for human
rights stems from his own mental illness (he has clinical depression and Obsessive
Compulsive Disorder). He devotes a lot of his time to encouraging a greater awareness and
understanding of mental ill health and addressing accompanying issues of stigma and
discrimination. He has spoken in the media, to organisations and in public on these matters.
He is also an acclaimed writer, publishing books on rugby league, the Holocaust and – most
recently – a diary of a year living with mental illness, called ‘A Year in Melancholia’.