1 EQUALITY & DIVERSITY Policy Application: Whole Organisation Department(s) This policy has also been adopted by Age UK Cheshire Trading Ltd. Controlled Document: This document shall not be copied in part or whole without the express permission of the author or the author s representative Job title of the author: Deputy Chief Executive Purpose of the policy: This document outlines Age UK Cheshire s approach to equality and diversity. Responsibilities for implementation and review: Policies and Procedures Group Approved by Staff Committee: 18 May 2011 Approved by Board: 28 July 2011 Policy Launch Date: August 2011 Policy Review Date: August 2013 Other related documents: Principles of Care Bullying & Harassment Recruitment & Selection
2 Equality & Diversity Policy Valuing diversity, reducing inequality and ensuring all people are treated with dignity and respect are core themes of Age UK. The organisation recognises that inequality, disadvantage and prejudice exist in society and that older people as a group are likely to suffer discrimination. Policy Statement The aim of this policy is to ensure that no one who is in contact with Age UK Cheshire in any capacity will receive a less favourable response on the grounds of age, race, ethnicity, faith, marital status, gender, sexual orientation and physical or mental impairment. We wish to ensure that in all aspects of our work those people involved are representative of the local communities we serve. These aims are all encompassing and apply to all those who work or wish to work for Age UK Cheshire as a paid employee or volunteer, in addition, to customers, clients and visitors. The aim is to ensure that anyone in contact with the organisation in person, through the website, through publications or using any written materials has equal access to the organisation and its services. The Trustees of Age UK Cheshire will agree action areas in relation to achieving these aims which will be incorporated into the organisation s Strategic Plan and be subject to regular review. The implementation of the policy and completion of the action areas will be the responsibility of the Chief Executive who will involve all senior managers and staff at all levels in the implementation of the policy, procedures and action plan in a way that is appropriate to their job role and responsibilities. All staff and volunteers will accept they have personal responsibility for ensuring that they act appropriately and in accordance with the policy and procedures.
3 Employees & Volunteers We aim to create a working environment in which individual differences and the contribution of all our staff and volunteers, are recognised and valued, that promotes dignity and respect for all and where intimidation, discrimination, bullying and harassment will not be tolerated. All those working on behalf of Age UK Cheshire, in whatever capacity, and, whether paid, or non-paid as in the case of volunteers, will be treated fairly and with respect. Selection for employment, promotion, training, or other benefit will be on the basis of aptitude and ability. Volunteer recruitment will follow the same principle. All employees and volunteers will be helped and encouraged to develop their full potential and their talents and resources will be fully utilised to maximise the efficiency of the organisation. In practise this means that all employment and volunteering practices and procedures will ensure fairness. Monitoring processes will be in place and an annual report made to Trustees on the results of the monitoring (see Appendices 1 and 2). Efforts will be made and positive actions will be included in the organisation s action plan to ensure that no one will be excluded from working for Age UK Cheshire because of their age, race, ethnicity, faith, marital status, sexual orientation, gender, physical or mental impairment. Breaches of this policy by employees will be dealt with under the organisation s Disciplinary process. Clients and Customers Age UK Cheshire aims to create an environment in which clients and customers are respected and valued for the diversity and individuality they bring to the organisation, and will work towards ensuring that its client and customer base is reflective of local communities. All customers and clients will be treated with dignity and respect and the organisation, its staff and volunteers, will ensure that all clients and customers are able to avail themselves of the services we provide (see Service Plans & Provision). Whilst we cannot impose our values on other people we should not tolerate discrimination, harassment and bullying by clients and customers towards other clients or customers, staff or volunteers whilst on our
4 premises or within premises where we are working. It is the responsibility of all staff and volunteers to take immediate action to curtail such behaviour (see Dealing with Challenging Behaviour Policy). At Age UK Cheshire we accept that we are often dealing with clients at times of crisis or when their normal behaviour may be affected by illness or medication. Staff and volunteers are encouraged to consider the individual s circumstances before reaching a judgement on the person s behaviour. That being said discriminatory and abusive behaviour will not be allowed to continue. Incidents of discriminatory behaviour should be reported immediately by staff and volunteers to their line manager. An Incident Report will be completed and reviewed by a Senior Manager before a decision is taken on how to proceed. All Incident Reports are reported to Staff Committee and at Board meetings and are reviewed six monthly at the Quality Management Meeting. The organisation reserves the right to withdraw a service from a client if they do not refrain from their discriminatory behaviour. This decision will only be taken after a full investigation into the circumstances and alternative sources of service provision considered. Periodic audits of clients and customers will be carried out by the organisation and the results reported to the Trustees. Third Parties Whilst this policy cannot be directly applied to third parties with whom we work, if any issues arise with regard to equality and diversity in relation to any contractor of third party, then this will be taken seriously by the organisation and raised with the other party in the strongest possible terms. This means that all staff and volunteers observing or are the subject of discriminatory behaviour, should immediately report the incident to their line manager. An Incident Report should be completed giving full details of the incident, which will be reviewed by a Senior Manager, who will determine the course of action to be taken.
5 Implementation & Training It is the responsibility of Age UK Cheshire to promote equality of opportunity in employment in all aspects of our work and to monitor the implementation of this policy regularly. Supervisors and managers have a particular responsibility for ensuring this policy is fairly and consistently applied in all areas under their control. All employees and volunteers will receive training in relation to this policy and associated procedures at induction and any specific training as necessary according to their duties. All are expected to comply with this policy and any breaches will be considered a disciplinary matter. This could lead to dismissal in the case of employees or curtailment of the duties in the case of volunteers. Liability Age UK Cheshire can be held liable in law for acts of discrimination by their employees or volunteers. Individual employees and volunteers can be held personally liable for acts of discrimination they commit or contribute to. All staff and volunteers must conform to this policy and associated procedures and ensure that there is no discrimination, either direct or implied in any of their decisions, behaviours or actions. Service Plans & Provision Age UK Cheshire is committed to providing services fairly and equitably to all older people, their relatives, representatives or carers reflecting the diverse nature of the older population of Cheshire and to address issues of alienation or isolation. All will be treated with dignity and respect. All Service Managers will ensure that service plans enable all older people to benefit from the services that they manage and that positive actions are taken to ensure this is the case. Written service plans, development plans and service reports will include an Equality Impact Assessment (see Appendix 6) demonstrating what positive actions are being taken, including the accommodation of people with specific requirements due to age, race, ethnicity, faith, gender, marital status, sexual orientation gender, physical or mental impairment.
6 Appendices: Appendix 1 Ethnicity Monitoring Form Staff Recruitment Appendix 2 Ethnicity Monitoring Form Clients/Members/Volunteers Appendix 3 Service Development Plans Appendix 4 Organisation Action Plan Appendix 5 Definitions Appendix 6 Equality Impact Assessment toolkit
7 APPENDIX 1: EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES MONITORING FORM STAFF RECRUITMENT Date of Birth: Age: I would describe my ethnic origin as (please place an X in the appropriate boxes): Asian Other Bangladesh Black African Black Caribbean Black Other Chinese Indian Other Pakistani White Male Female I would describe myself as disabled: Yes No
8 APPENDIX 2: EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES MONITORING FORM CLIENTS/MEMBERS AND VOLUNTEERS Name:. Date of birth: / /. Postcode:.. Age UK Cheshire is committed to promoting equal opportunities in all of our services, irrespective of colour, sex, race, age, marital status, disability, religious or political beliefs. We rely on your help to check that our Equality & Diversity Policy is working effectively; therefore we would be grateful if you could provide the following details. The information you give us is completely confidential and this form will be shredded once we have collated the data anonymously. Please circle your details: Age: Under Gender: Male Female I would describe myself as disabled: YES NO I would describe my ethnic origin as: (please circle) White British White and Black Asian White Traveller - Irish Other Asian Background White Irish Other Mixed Background White Gypsy/ Romany Black Caribbean White Other White and Black Caribbean White and Black African Indian Pakistani Bangladeshi Chinese Other ethnic group Black African I do not wish to say Other Black This information will be used solely by Age UK Cheshire for monitoring purpose and will not be disclosed to any third party.
9 APPENDIX 3 Equality & Diversity Service Development Plans Who is the service aimed at? If the service is aimed at a specific client group, give reasons for doing so What positive actions will be/have been taken to ensure wide access to the service? What monitoring arrangements are in place? Is the service meeting Age UK Cheshire s policy on Equality & Diversity? Who is responsible for the service?
10 APPENDIX 4 Equality & Diversity Organisational Action Plan 20//-20// Action 1 Outcome Key Indicators Actions Required Timescale Key Staff/responsibility Risk Factors Action2 Outcome Key Indicators Actions Required Timescale Key Staff/responsibility Risk Factors Agreed by Board on. Chair. Reviewed by Board on. Chair.
11 APPENDIX 5 Definitions: Recruitment/selection, training, development and promotion: All of these areas will be based strictly on merit and business performance and no account will be taken of the age, gender, marital status, race, ethnic origin, nationality, national origin, disability, religion or sexual orientation of the individual. The organisation is responsible for ensuring that no job applicant or employee receives less favourable treatment, and that no-one is placed at a disadvantage by requirements that are either directly or indirectly discriminatory. Religion, creed or personal belief: Neither the organisation nor its employees will discriminate against any creed, religion or personal belief, provided that such creeds or beliefs do not run counter to this policy by advocating discrimination or intolerance of others. The organisation will endeavour to accommodate, as far as is practicable, essential practices related to such creeds and beliefs, provided that they neither breach organisational policy nor interfere with the efficient running of the organisation or its legal obligations, e.g. health and safety. Disability: The organisation recognises that the unique problems of disabled employees and volunteers may require special arrangements to be made to enable them to fulfil their roles effectively. The organisation will aid, where possible, the recruitment of disabled employees through the consideration of adaptation of premises, the modification of equipment, the provision of special aids and job re-structuring. This will be undertaken within the financial and practical constraints of the organisation. The organisation will also provide for the rehabilitation and re-training of employees who become disabled, wherever this is possible. Age: In assessing the ability of an individual to carry out a specific role, the assessment will be based strictly on the requirements of that job. Age, in isolation, will neither be used to justify the appointment nor to debar an applicant from that appointment.
12 Harassment or intimidation: The organisation will not tolerate any harassment or intimidation of an individual. Where any such complaint of harassment or intimidation is lodged, it will be dealt with promptly in accordance with the organisation s Policy on Harassment and Bullying. Equality Impact Assessment (EIA): This is a systematic analysis of a policy, strategy, procedure, project or service that explores the potential for an adverse impact on a particular group or community. Discrimination: This occurs when someone directly or indirectly treats a person or a group of people unfavourably on the grounds of their race, colour, nationality, ethnic origin, national origin, age, religion, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, gender reassignment, membership (or non-membership) of a trade union, or disability. This covers all behaviour including remarks and insinuations, both verbal and non-verbal, which cause offence. It can also include insensitive jokes, deliberate exclusion from conversations, or insulting words and behaviour. This is covered in more depth in the organisation s Policy on Harassment and Bullying.
13 APPENDIX 6 Equality Impact Assessment Toolkit 1. What is Equality Impact Assessment ( EIA ) Equality Impact Assessment ( EIA ) is a systematic analysis of a policy, strategy, process, project and service to explore the potential for an adverse impact on a particular group or community. It is a method of assessing and recording the likely differential and/or adverse impact of a policy, project, initiative or service on people and individuals from equality target groups. If a policy, procedure or service results in unfairness or discrimination then changes should be considered to eliminate or lessen the impact. The purpose of the EIA is to increase participation and inclusion, to change the culture of public decision-making and to place a more proactive approach to the promotion of equality at the heart of public policy. The EIA process enables the organisation to respond to three basic equality principles: Eliminating discrimination Promoting equality of opportunity Promoting good relations between different groups The processes involved in conducting an EIA should not be looked on as an end in themselves. Instead, it should be borne in mind that the aim of the assessment is the promotion of equality of opportunity and thus it is the outcomes of the equality impact assessment that are of primary concern. 2. Why an Equality Impact Assessment has to be carried out? Because: - It is a statutory requirement for public authorities to undertake EIAs and they expect that those organisations to which they award contracts will also produce EIA s. - Race (also ethnicity, nationality), age, sexual orientation, religion and belief, disability and gender are groups and target areas that stem from the existing legislation in the UK that covers discrimination.
14 There are, however, other groups and sections of the community that may be known to experience more disadvantage than others. - It is in line with Age UK s aims and objectives. - It will help us to employ people and provide services fairly to the community - It demonstrates best practice. 3. Who carries out an EIA and who is responsible for the quality and implementing the outcomes? The assessment and outcomes belong to each service/department. It will be the responsibility of the service for using the outcome to help to shape the service. A lead person should be appointed to take responsibility for overseeing the impact assessment and ensuring that it is completed appropriately. Senior Managers will approve the EIA and all EIAs will be presented to the Board. 4. How do I know if something needs to be Impact Assessed? It is not just formal policies and services that may be subject to EIA, but also strategies, procedures and processes. It may include written documents, but also non-written everyday procedures and customs. The clue is to ask yourself the following questions: - Is the policy (service, procedure, etc) concerned with people? - Is it outward looking or inward looking? - Is it legislation led? - Does it involve face to face contact? - Does it include making decisions based on someone s individual characteristics or circumstances? - Is there a history or long-established pattern of unequal outcomes? (and do I have enough evidence to prove otherwise?) - Is the policy (service, procedure, etc) likely to have a significant impact on someone s life or wellbeing? All policies (services, procedures, etc) need to be impact assessed for relevance to the six strands of equality (age, faith, race, disability, gender and sexuality). This should be an integral part of the development/review process.
15 5. Equality screening and Full Impact Assessment template Note: Please delete guidance notes (italics) after completing the form Name of service: Date: Name Carried out by: Role Aims of the service: Stakeholders: Considering the purpose of the Equality Impact Assessment process, is the policy (service, procedure etc.) relevant? Potential Impact on Target Groups Target group Potential Issues for users Measures currently in place Race (also ethnicity, nationality and associated aspects such as culture & language) Gypsies and Travellers Disability (consider full rainbow of mental and physical impairments: mobility, manual dexterity, speech, hearing, learning, understanding, visual sight, MS, cancer, HIV etc.) Gender (consider associated aspects e.g. safety, single-parenting, caring responsibility, potential for bullying and harassment).
16 Transgender Sexual orientation (includes heterosexual, lesbian, gay, bi-sexual) Age (including all groups children, young people, working age, elderly) Religion and belief (the most common religions include Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism, Shinto, Nonconformists)) Rural issues Socio-economic issues Other (there may be other target groups relevant to your service) Is the Policy/Service likely to have an impact on Human Rights? We all have basic human rights which must be upheld. Human rights are about ensuring Fairness, Respect, Equality, Dignity and Autonomy (FREDA) for everyone. Everyone has the right to enjoy their basic human rights such as right to life and not be treated in an inhuman or degrading manner, protected by the Human Rights Act Evidence Evidence to support the above answers. Customers equality data monitoring and how the results inform service provision. Please consider quantitative, qualitative research, national and international evidence, results of any consultations you might have carried out Proposed actions (to be reflected in the Service plans): Actions emerging from the Potential impact on target groups and the Evidence sections in order to address any gaps Action Target date Responsibility
17 Rating: In light of the above how would you rate the impact of your policy/service etc. on any of the target groups, for guidance please see footnotes. Race Disability Gender Sexual High (1) Please continue below Medium (2) Please exit the process Low (3) Please exit the process orientation Age Religion & belief Rural Issues Other Carers IMPORTANT! Only policies and services rated as high have to be fully Impact Assessed. Full Impact Assessment requires consultation with members from the target groups highlighted as being at the receiving end of any potential impact. EIA consultation exercises will be undertaken by relevant service. (1) High = significant potential impact, risk of exposure, history of complaints, no mitigating measures in place or no evidence available, urgent need for consultation with service users, general public, employees (2) Medium = some potential impact, some mitigating measures in place but no evidence available how effective they are, would be beneficial to consult with service users, general public etc. but not urgent (3) Low = almost bordering with non relevance to the EIA process (heavily legislation led very little discretion exercised, limited public facing aspect)
18 Race Disability Gender Age Religion & belief Rural Full Equality Impact Assessment part: Affected target group (e.g. people with disabilities) Any particular segment within the target group (e.g. people with learning disabilities) Specific issues to be a subject of consultation (e.g. how could the Council make its annual financial results understandable to people with learning disabilities, what support needed etc.?) Outcomes of consultation What changes have been made as a result of the consultation outcomes Feedback given to the consultees? YES / NO. Lead person responsible for the EIA Senior Manager Date: Board Meeting date: Next review of the EIA, measures put in place, changes: (high - 1 year, medium 2 years, low 3 years)
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