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Equality, diversity and inclusion policy

October2021 (replacing the Equal Opportunities Policy)

Policy Statement

Our commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion

Scouts is committed to encouraging and promoting diversity and inclusion in our workplace and services to members. This reflects our values of respect, belief, care, cooperation and integrity, where everyone should be treated with dignity at all time. Scouts will take every possible step to tackle all forms of discrimination, inequality, and unfair treatment, whether it’s intentional or unintentional, direct or indirect. Scouts is committed to making sure that all employees have equal access to opportunities and to removing all barriers to inclusion in the workplace.

1. Purpose and Aims of the Policy

To set out Scouts clear commitment to creating a diverse, inclusive workplace and becoming a best practice employer, going beyond legal requirements on equality, diversity and inclusion

  • To provide the legal framework and definitions surrounding equality, diversity and inclusion; the protected characteristics; and forms of discrimination
  • To provide clear guidance for staff on expected behaviours and responsibilities as employees of a diverse and inclusive workplace
  • To set out a fair and inclusive approach to the recruitment, selection, and professional development of employees
  • To make sure that equality, diversity and inclusion is embedded in all of the organisations practices and processes
  • To explain the possible effects of any breach of the policy All employees, consultants, and agency workers who work on behalf of Scouts are expected to follow the principles of this policy.

2. Legal Framework 

Current equality legislation and associated codes of practice to be taken into account include (but aren’t limited to):
  • Equality Act 2010
  • Employment Rights Act 1996
  • Part-Time Workers Regulations 2000
  • Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974
  • Equal Pay Act 1970
  • Employment Equal Treatment Framework Directive 2000 (as amended).
  • Gender Recognition Act 2004

This legislation protects people against all forms of discrimination based on particular protected characteristics. Protected characteristics are certain attributes that people possess, which the law considers must be safeguarded.

There are nine protected characteristics that it’s unlawful to discriminate based on:sex, age, disability, pregnancy and maternity, race, sexual orientation, religion or belief, marital or civil partnership status, and gender reassignment. See Appendix A for legal definitions of these terms. Scouts commitment and approach to inclusion goes beyond the legal characteristics listed here. We’ll take steps to make sure everyone feels included

3. Types of Discrimination

Scouts and its employees will do everything it can to make sure that people are treated fairly and equally across all protected characteristics and at all levels of the organisation by:

  • Preventing, tackling, and addressing seriously all instances of discrimination and language thats inappropriate, offensive or insensitive
  • Challenging assumptions and stereotypes across all protected characteristics
  • Making sure that employees from diverse backgrounds have equal access to progression, promotion, reward, and recognition
  • Supporting all employees to balance their life at work and at home
  • Making workspaces accessible and co-developing effective reasonable adjustments with disabled employees and those with temporary health needs or conditions (for example, employees who are pregnant) so that all employees can reach their full potential
  • Visibly promoting and championing the benefits of a diverse workforce
  • Making sure that employeescontractual requirements and employee benefits dont disadvantage or exclude certain individuals or groups
  • Valuing and respecting the different perspectives and viewpoints of all employees
  • Focusing on employees’ abilities and strengths and avoiding any assumptions about ability based on a person’s identity or background

4. Responsibilities

The Board of Trustees is responsible for promoting equality, diversity, and inclusion and monitoring how this policy is put into effect.

The senior leadership team is responsible for championing this policy on behalf of the Board and leading their teams in a way that’s consistent with the policy. They’ll also work to make sure that all staff who report to them understand what’s needed to meet the requirements of this policy.

HR and diversity team members are responsible for developing, updating, communicating, and implementing this policy.

All staff members are expected to become familiar with this policy and make sure that their behaviour and practice reflect its ethos.

5. Actions

6. Training and Support

All employees are required to attend equality, diversity, and inclusion training. If they need it, individuals and teams willbe provided with further guidance and support to fulfil their role and responsibilities. Equality, diversity, and inclusion will be integral to recruitment and selection training.

7. Diversity Monitoring

Diversity monitoring is an essential process for Scouts. It means Scouts can identify patterns and highlight any areas of concern. Diversity information provided by job applicants and employees for monitoring purposes is kept confidential and in line with the Data Protection Act 2018. Scouts will consider and take appropriate action to address any concerns identified as a result of the monitoring process. Scouts may use appropriate methods, including lawful positive action, to address the under-representation of any group.

8. Breach of Policy

All complaints of discrimination will be sensitively investigated. If they’re proven, they will result in appropriate action for the perpetrator. Any employee found to be in breach of this policy could be subject to disciplinary action and/or their continued engagement with Scouts will be questioned.

9. Review of Policy 

Scouts will regularly review this policy to make sure that it’s up to date and in line with the law and the development of Scouts’ equality, diversity, and inclusion vision and strategy. Reviews will involve input from employees and staff diversity groups and networks.

10. Related Policies

Dignity and Respect 

11. Appendices: Appendix A

Legal definitions of protected characteristics as defined in The Equality Act 2010. Please see Scouts inclusive language guidance on the intranet for more inclusive definitions and explanations(in process of being written at time of publication).