Developing healthcare services which are personal, fair and diverse is at the heart of what we are aspiring to achieve at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust.
The Equality Act (2010) has brought together and streamlined many strands of previous equality legislation in England, Scotland and Wales. It also introduces the new “public sector equality duty” (PSED), which is made up of the general equality duty which is supported by specific duties. The Act extends protection to the nine protected characteristic groups: age, disability, gender re-assignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation. The general equality duty places a requirement on us to publish information that demonstrates compliance with the duty by 31 January 2012 and annually thereafter. The specific duties require us to publish our equality objectives by the 6 April.
The Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) is set out within the Equality Act 2010 and details what public sector bodies need to do in order to comply with:
Aim 1: eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Act.
Aim 2: advance equality of opportunity between people who share protected characteristics and those who do not.
Aim 3: foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.
The Act also explains that having due regard for advancing equality involves:
The Equality Delivery System (EDS2) is a national framework developed by NHS England to help NHS organisations improve their equality and diversity performance. The trust has embraced the EDS2 and developed an Equality Standard to integrate this in everything we do.
The Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) was launched on 1 April 2015 by NHS England and is included as part of the NHS standard contract. The WRES has been developed to address workforce inequalities relating to (Black & Minority Ethnic) BME staff across the NHS workforce. It draws on research that provides evidence of a less favourable experience and in some cases, disadvantage. It highlights the important links between the consequences of this and patient care. This is a national issue which the NHS is keen to see addressed. From 1 April 2015, all NHS organisations are required to demonstrate through the nine point Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) metric how they are addressing race equality issues in a range of staffing areas.
How does equality and diversity relate to my care? The department of health has laid out a clear ambition for the NHS which is to be a health service that is responsive to the needs of and accountable to all members of all communities. A service that delivers high quality care for all, that takes appropriate account of individual differences. A service where 'everyone counts' and where equality is integral to quality. This applies to all healthcare services provided or commissioned by the NHS. It applies to staff as well as patients and we support this ambition.
How does equality and diversity relate to my job? The Trust is committed to employment practices which aim to make sure that all staff feel valued and are treated with dignity and respect in an inclusive environment which acknowledges difference and celebrates diversity.
The following pages demonstrate a range of information that the organisation has published to help demonstrate how we meet the requirements of the general equality duty which is broken down into three aims. We have tried to demonstrate which of the aims, each piece of information relates to and this information is on the front sheets.
Analysis of relevant data and information helps us to continue towards providing healthcare services that are fair to all and ensure an inclusive environment for staff. Furthermore, information gained from involvement events on the diversity agenda and engagement with those who share a protected characteristic, will inform the development of equality objectives for our organisation.