Delivering Equality and Diversity - Volunteer Centre Western Isles

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Delivering Equality and Diversity

VolunteerWiki article on Equality & Diversity can be read here: Delivering equality and diversity (PDF)

Every year Acas helps employers and employees from thousands of workplaces. That means we keep right up to date with today’s employment relations issues – such as discipline and grievance handling, preventing discrimination and communicating effectively in workplaces. Make the most of our practical experience for your organisation – find out what we can do for you.

We inform

We answer your questions, give you the facts you need and talk through your options. You can then make informed decisions. Contact us to keep on top of what employment rights legislation means in practice – before it gets on top of you.

We train

From a two-hour session on the key points of new legislation or employing people to courses specially designed for people in your organisation, we offer training to suit you. Look on the website for what is coming up in your area and to book a place or talk to your local Acas office about our tailored services.

We work with you

We offer hands-on practical help and support to tackle issues in your business with you. This might be through one of our well-known problem-solving services. Or a programme we have worked out together to put your business firmly on track for effective employment

About this guide

This is a quick-start guide for smaller businesses wanting to deliver on equality. It looks at three key steps you can take:

  1. Review your existing equality policy and action plan – or write a new policy if you don’t have one
  2. Monitor how the policy is working in practice – this is the critical stage in delivering equality in the workplace
  3. Take action, where it is needed, to address inequality or promote diversity.

This quick-start guide takes you though these areas and gets you started. For a full good practice guide covering all aspects see the Acas Guide on Delivering equality and diversity.

1. Review your equality policy and action plan

The starting point to address fairness at work is an equality policy with an action plan to back it up.

Your policy should contain:

  • a statement of your aim to encourage, value and manage diversity
  • your commitment to providing equality for all
  • your wish to attain a workforce that is representative of the communities from which it is drawn to secure the widest pool of talent possible.

Sample equality policy

(Company name) is committed to eliminating discrimination and encouraging diversity amongst our workforce. Our aim is that our workforce will be truly representative of all sections of society and each employee feels respected and able to give of their best. To that end the purpose of this policy is to provide equality and fairness for all in our employment and not to discriminate on grounds of gender, marital status, race, ethnic origin, colour, nationality, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, religion or age. We oppose all forms of unlawful and unfair discrimination. All employees, whether part-time, full-time or temporary, will be treated fairly and with respect. Selection for employment, promotion, training or any other benefit will be on the basis of aptitude and ability. All employees will be helped and encouraged to develop their full potential and the talents and resources of the workforce will be fully utilised to maximise the efficiency of the organisation.

Our commitment

To create an environment in which individual differences and the contributions of all our staff are recognised and valued. • Every employee is entitled to a working environment that promotes dignity and respect to all. No form of intimidation, bullying or harassment will be tolerated. • Training, development and progression opportunities are available to all staff. • Equality in the workplace is good management practice and makes sound business sense. • We will review all our employment practices and procedures to ensure fairness. • Breaches of our equality policy will be regarded as misconduct and could lead to disciplinary proceedings. • This policy is fully supported by senior management and has been agreed with trade unions and/or employee representatives. (Insert details if appropriate). • The policy will be monitored and reviewed annually.

What about the action plan?

Your action should be a simple list about what will be done, by when and by whom. You can:

  • set dates on when you will do the things such as monitoring, reviewing procedures, and training
  • expand on how these will be done and by whom
  • set your measures of success – how you will evaluate them and how and when will you review the overall working of your policy?

2. Monitor how the policy is working

What is monitoring and why should I do it? The purpose of monitoring is to enable you to make sure your policy and action plan are working. If they are not working well you need to ask yourself ‘why?’ and do something to put it right.

Monitoring involves gathering individual personal information on the diversity of your potential recruits or existing employees at certain times and then comparing and analysing this against:

  • other groups of employees in your company
  • jobseekers in your local community or even
  • the broader national labour market.

What information should I collect?

Only collect information you are going to use. Collecting information for its own sake is pointless and will not help your planning or decision-making. Organisations will often collect information on:

  • gender
  • race
  • disability
  • age

You can monitor sexual orientation, gender identity and religion and belief. If you want more information about how to do this see the Acas Guide on Delivering equality and diversity. Ask job applicants for monitoring data on a sheet that can be detached from the application form. That way the information can be kept separate from the selection process. It should be made clear that the information will only be used for equality monitoring and not in the short-listing process. To get an accurate picture of your organisation and to identify any inequalities you will also need to monitor the existing workforce. Once again, explain your reasons for monitoring. Make it clear that you are trying to ensure that every employee has the same access to training, promotion and other opportunities. Framework monitoring form How to use this form Overleaf is a simple monitoring form you can use the whole form or only use particular sections of it to construct your own monitoring form tailored to your company requirements. For information on monitoring sexual orientation, religion and belief and gender identity, see the Acas Guide Delivering equality and diversity.

Sample monitoring form

Employee Pay Number (please enter) —-/——

Our guidance throughout recognises that monitoring is strictly confidential but not anonymous. Pay numbers are a way to identify employees for monitoring purposes to ensure fairness and access to opportunity. For job applicants, you should enter the job applied for title.

Monitoring ethnicity

How would you describe yourself? Choose ONE section from A to E, and then write below.

Based on Delivering Equality & Diversity by ACAS.