Equality & Diversity Policy
1. Policy Purpose
The Institute of Wellbeing values diversity and we recognise that different people bring different perspectives, ideas, knowledge and culture, and that this difference brings great strength.
This Policy will set out how the Institute of Wellbeing will work towards the promotion of equality of opportunity in all of its service delivery. It sets out how the Institute of Wellbeing will ensure that discrimination is challenged and eliminated through legislation and positive action.
This Policy will also set out the responsibilities of our staff members and others and actions that the Organisation will take to ensure full compliance with this policy.
2. Policy Beliefs
We believe that discrimination or exclusion based on individual characteristics and circumstances, such as age; disability; caring or dependency responsibilities; gender or gender identity; marriage and civil partnership status; political opinion; pregnancy and maternity; race, colour, caste, nationality, ethnic or national origin; religion or belief; sexual orientation; socio-economic background; trade union membership status or other distinctions – represents a waste of talent and a denial of opportunity for self-fulfillment.
We respect the rights of individuals, including the right to hold different views and beliefs. We will not allow these differences to be manifested in a way that is hostile or degrading to others.
We expect commitment and involvement from all our staff, clients, partners and providers of goods and services in working towards the achievement of our vision.
3. Best Practice
We will follow best practice in all of the equality areas and work towards:
- Eliminating unlawful discrimination
- Eliminating harassment
- Promoting equality of opportunity
- Promoting good relations between staff, different groups and service users
- Recognising and taking into account people’s differences Equality & Diversity Policy / 0700 2222 700 / www.tiow.org
Eliminating unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation involves:
- Ensuring there is no less favourable treatment for all individuals
- Ensuring no factors give rise to discrimination
4. Managing and Embedding Equality
To promote and advance equality of opportunity which involves:
- Removing or minimising disadvantage suffered by people
- Taking steps to meet the needs of people that are different to the needs of other people
To promote and foster good relations between people, which involves:
- Tackling all types of prejudices
- Promoting a balanced understanding between people
Equality of opportunity and freedom from discrimination is a fundamental right and the Institute of Wellbeing has a legal and moral duty to exercise leadership in the promotion of equality of opportunity and diversity. We will therefore promote equality and challenge all forms of discrimination through our role as a service provider, community leader and employer.
We firmly believe that our work will assist in promoting a culture that celebrates and welcomes diversity.
5. Legal Responsibilities
The Institute of Wellbeing has a legal duty to ensure compliance through the following legislation and regulations:
The introduction of the Equality Act 2010 has transformed equality law in Great Britain. The first phase became law in October 2010 and it harmonises, updates and amends previous anti-discrimination legislation, providing greater protection from discrimination and harassment for all individuals across a wide range of protected characteristics.
The duty requires us to eliminate unlawful discrimination, advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations, in the exercise of all our functions.
6. Our Nine Equality Principles
The Act places a duty on the Institute of Wellbeing to have due regard to the need to promote equality of opportunity between persons of different religious belief, political opinion, racial group, age, marital status or sexual orientation; between men and women generally; between persons with a disability and persons without; and between persons with dependants and persons without.
These are commonly referred to as the nine equality categories. We are also required by the same Act to have regard to the desirability of promoting good relations between persons from different religious beliefs, political opinions or racial groups.
The nine protected characteristics are:
- Gender Reassignment
- Religion & Belief
- Sexual Orientation
- Marriage & Civil Partnership
- Pregnancy, Maternity & Paternity
7. Discrimination, Compliance, Review and Complaints
Discrimination, harassment or victimisation based on any of the individual characteristics or circumstances covered by this equality policy will not be tolerated.
All staff and clients have a right to raise a concern in relation to decisions that they believe have been made based on their individual characteristics and which result in negative consequences or differential treatment.
We will give added weight to the seriousness of such cases:
Malicious allegations made under bullying and harassment will be treated as serious disciplinary offences.
We will not tolerate any form of bullying or harassment. Examples include unwanted physical contact, personal insults or name-calling, sexual innuendo, coercion, constant unfounded criticism, unwanted intrusion, persistent patronising or exclusion, and derogatory comments.
Pregnancy and Maternity.
Direct discrimination and indirect discrimination, continue to be prohibited, but are now extended across all of the characteristics, with the exception of pregnancy and maternity.
Pregnancy and maternity now has specific protection for the duration of pregnancy and up to 26 weeks after birth.
Protection from harassment is extended to all characteristics with the exceptions of pregnancy and maternity, and marriage and civil partnership.
Individuals are protected from victimisation, where a person makes an allegation or brings proceedings under the Act, and suffers a detriment as a result.
Discrimination by association is extended to cover all the characteristics, with the exception of pregnancy and maternity. For example, carers are protected because of their association with someone with a protected characteristic, such as a disabled person or an older person.
Similarly, discrimination because of perception is extended to the same characteristics. This means that individuals who are treated less favourably because they are perceived to have a characteristic are protected, even though they don’t have that characteristic.
It continues to be unlawful not to make a reasonable adjustment for a disabled person and a disabled person no longer has to show that their impairment affects a capacity, such as mobility or manual dexterity. It continues to be lawful to treat a disabled person more favourably than other people.
It is now unlawful to ask disability or health-related questions during a selection process, with some exceptions.
A new protection, discrimination arising from disability, has been introduced. It means that unfavourable treatment because of something connected with a person’s disability is unlawful.
8. Monitoring, Assessing and Reporting
The Institute of Wellbeing is ultimately responsible for ensuring that the planning and provision of our services meet the needs of all our clients and employees.
The Senior Management Group is responsible for monitoring the progress we make on promoting equality of opportunity. In addition, all staff have a duty to promote equality and diversity in everything they do, and collectively they are responsible for realising the commitments outlined in this Policy.
Some members of staff have specific responsibilities with regards to this Policy:
- Accountability for this Equality & Diversity Policy rests with the Chief Executive.
- The Senior Management Team is responsible for ensuring that the Institute of Wellbeing has an effective framework in place to deliver the outcomes identified in this Policy.
- All Mangers have day-to-day responsibility for ensuring that their teams deliver the outcomes identified in this Policy.
- The Programme Manager is responsible for coordinating, monitoring and reviewing this Policy as it covers all services delivery.
The Institute of Wellbeing monitors, assesses and reviews the effectiveness of its Equal Opportunities policy. All the Institute of Wellbeing’s functions relating to eLearners will continue to be monitored and reviewed.
9. Review and Annual Reporting
We will report annually on the progress we have made towards promoting disability, gender, race, age, sexual orientation and religion or belief equality. To help us do this effectively, we will ask all clients and relevant stakeholder organisations for their feedback.
As part of these reviews, we will consider the information we collect on how our service users are accessing our services and employment opportunities to ensure that we are making progress.
10. Complaints Under This Policy
Complaints – Employment / Service Delivery. (view Appeals & Complaints Policy)
The Institute of Wellbeing operates a comprehensive staff grievance, disciplinary and complaints policy. This is available on request.
What is a Complaint?
A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction about the standard of service provided by the Institute of Wellbeing or its staff. A complaint can be made by anyone, either on their own behalf or for someone else who is unable to make their complaint themselves.
You can make a complaint if you believe that you have been directly affected by our alleged failure to comply with our equality policy or if you believe we have discriminated unlawfully against you.
If you are unable to send your complaint in writing, we will be pleased to accept your complaint in a format that meets your needs. If you require any kind of support to make your complaint, please contact us to discuss your needs. We will acknowledge your complaint within three working days and respond to it within ten working days of our acknowledgement. Where we need to pass your complaint to another office, we will tell you and inform you of any delay in responding that may occur as a result.
11. Our Commitment to Equality & Diversity in eLearning
The Institute of Wellbeing is committed to eliminating unlawful discrimination and upholding the promotion of equality of opportunity for all staff and learners and prospective eLearners, in its functions of:
a) Advertising, selecting procedures and initial recruitment;
b) Promotion and internal recruiting;
c) Community links and partnerships;
d) Induction and management of eLearning;
e) Programme delivery;
f) Assessment, review and evaluation;
g) Achievement and progression;
h) Monitoring and verification;
i) Personal and professional appraisals and development;
j) Annual pay reviews;
k) Learning and quality assurance;
l) Discipline and grievance procedures; severance.
The aim of the policy is to ensure that all eLearners and prospective eLearners are all treated equally, fairly and with the highest standards of customer care.
This Equal Opportunities Policy and our commitment to elearners operate within the legal framework of the Equality Act 2010.
- 12. Key Outcomes
- All learners and staff are to respect the policies and practices and to behave in an appropriate way that reflects and appreciates the diversity of the Institute of Wellbeing.
- Breaches of this policy by staff or eLearners will be fairly investigated and where appropriate, action will be taken
- All equal opportunities procedures will be fair, consistent and monitored
13. Measuring Success
The Institute of Wellbeing considers it’s Equal Opportunities Policy to be integral to its quality management and to ensure eLearners and staff have equality of access and provision the Institute of Wellbeing undertakes the following:
- All the Institute of Wellbeing’s marketing materials are committed to Equal Opportunities.
- All eLearners will have access to guidance and support regardless of: age, colour, race, nationality, ethnic/national origin, sexual orientation, disability, religion, gender or marital status.
- eLearning resources and assessment are designed to promote equal access, rights and responsibilities.
- eLearners needing support will have equal access to all resources wherever possible.
- The Institute of Wellbeing may advise eLearners which online resource are the most suitable.
- Any information obtained from eLearners through: reflective diary entries, reviews, achievements, questionnaires, surveys and interviews will be anonymous and used to improve the equality of opportunity available.
- All eLearners will have an opportunity through reflective diary entries, feedback and questionnaires to freely express personal views.
Every quarter, the Institute of Wellbeing management team meets to measure its success against these 7 statements and sets appropriate targets for enhancement/improvement.
Any individual who is unsure of the extent of this policy, or requires further advice or guidance in understanding it, should seek assistance from either their Line Manager or Personnel Officer.
Individuals who believe they, or any other member of staff or public, have not been treated within the spirit of this policy, are encouraged to report that fact to their Line Manager, or directly to Personnel.
If it is established that anyone has failed to comply with this policy, and committed an unlawful act of discrimination, disciplinary action may result.
15. Further Information
We welcome any questions, comments or feedback you may have regarding our equality policy. These should be addressed to the Institute of Wellbeing Progamme Manager.
This Equality & Diversity Policy will be published on our Website and on our staff Intranet. We will also provide paper copies and other alternate formats upon request, if possible.