Promoting Equality, Diversity and Human Rights
The NHS is for everyone. No matter your gender, the colour of your skin, your heritage or your age, everyone should receive the same high quality care every time you use a NHS service.
The Equality Act became law in 2010 and covers everyone in Britain. It protects people from discrimination, harassment and victimisation because of the protected characteristics that we all have. Under the Equality Act, there are nine protected characteristics:
- Gender reassignment
- Marriage and civil partnership
- Pregnancy and maternity
- Religion or belief
- Sexual orientationAs a commissioner of health services and as an employer, NHS Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees CCG values all people as individuals irrespective of their protected characteristics.Meeting Our Legal Duty
- As a public sector organisation, we embed equality, diversity, inclusion and human rights into all activities. To do this, we must demonstrate our commitment to:
- This web page is one of the ways in which we communicate, promote equality, value diversity and respect human rights in the commissioning of services for the local community.
- Equality, Diversity and Human Rights play a vital part in the work of the NHS locally. Every member of the community is likely, at some point, to receive some kind of health and social care. NHS Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees CCG welcomes diversity in society, acknowledging that experiences, aspirations and needs are as individual as each patient.
- eliminating unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation
- advancing equality of opportunity
- promoting good relations
We understand that our organisation and employees should:
- work towards removing or minimising disadvantages
- take steps to meet the needs of people from protected groups where these are different from the needs of other people
- encourage people from protected groups to participate in public life or in other activities where their participation is disproportionately low
Our aim is to uphold these aims and to close the gap in health inequalities.
The Equality Act 2010 outlines specific duties on public bodies such as ourselves, to meet the Public Sector Equality Duty more effectively. These specific duties are to:
- Publish information to demonstrate their compliance with the Equality Duty at least annually
- Set equality objectives at least every four years
We have developed our equality objectives to review and improve our performance and outcomes for people with characteristics protected by the Equality Act 2010. Our objectives and action plan has been developed through partnering with local stakeholders using the EDS2 process, and are listed below:
Objective 1 – Continuously improve engagement, and ensure that services are commissioned and designed to meet the needs of patients in all 9 protected characteristics
Objective 2 – Improve and simplify the Complaints Process for patients and increase awareness of current services available
Objective 3 – Continuously monitor and review staff satisfaction to ensure they are engaged, supported and have the tools to carry out their roles effectively
Objective 4 – Ensure that the CCG Governing Body actively leads and promotes Equality and Diversity throughout the organisation
Our information links below provide an overview of how we meet our public sector equality duty, both through commissioning and employment. We endeavour to work with our community interests and internal groups to prioritise our work which will produce better outcomes.
NHS Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees CCG is committed to ensuring that the organisation pays due regard to the three aims of the public sector equality duty. The systematic analysis of the impact of our actions and decisions on equality is one way that this can be achieved.
Equality impact assessments
The completion of equality impact assessments is no longer a statutory requirement. However, NHS Hartlepool and Stockton-on-Tees CCG believes that these are central to being a transparent and accountable organisation. The assessments ensure that we do not disadvantage people from certain groups by the way that we commission health services or through our employment practices. It is also a way of identifying where we might better promote equality of opportunity.
What are equality impact assessments?
An equality impact assessment is a useful tool that enables organisations to assess the implications of their decisions on the whole community. Carrying out an equality impact assessment will help organisations to:
- Eliminate discrimination and tackle inequality.
- Target resources in an efficient and fair way.
- Develop a better understanding of the communities they serve and create stronger social and community networks.
We require that equality impact assessments be an integral part of service planning and policy development. They are required to be completed whenever we plan, change or remove a service, policy or function.
Our process requires individuals and teams to think carefully about the likely impact of their work on different communities or groups. It involves anticipating the consequences of the organisation’s strategies, policies, procedures and functions on different communities and making sure that any negative consequences are eliminated or minimised and opportunities for promoting equality are maximised.
We have listed our main documentation below and provided the links for reference:
– CCG’s Equality Strategy 2016-2020
– Health Profiles: www.healthprofiles.info
– Public Health England – Local Health: http://www.localhealth.org.uk
- Hartlepool JSNA: http://www.teesjsna.org.uk/hartlepool/
- Stockton JSNA: http://www.teesjsna.org.uk/stockton/
Workforce Race Equality Standards (WRES)
The NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) was made available to the NHS from April 2015, following sustained engagement and consultation with key stakeholders including a widespread of NHS organisations across England. The WRES is included in the NHS standard contract, and since July 2015, NHS trusts have been producing and publishing their WRES data on an annual basis.
The WRES is being implemented as the best means of helping the NHS as a whole to improve its performance on workforce race equality. There is considerable evidence that the less favourable treatment of BME staff in the NHS, through poor treatment and opportunities, has a significant impact on staff well-being, patient outcomes and on the efficient and effective running of the NHS and that the measures needed to address such discrimination will benefit patient care and organisational effectiveness.
The CCG assesses itself against the NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) annually to ensure that:
- data is collected and review against the nine WRES indicators
- an action plan is produced to close any gaps in workplace experience between white and Black and Ethnic Minority (BME) staff, and
- Board membership includes BME representation.
Further information regarding WRES can be found here Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES)
Hartlepool and Stockton CCG is required to publish a WRES annual report and action plan to address any areas for improvement. The CCG is committed to the WRES and you can see our most recent report and action plan below:
For more information on the CCG’s WRES, please contact NECSU.Equality@nhs.net