West Suffolk is increasingly becoming a more and more diverse place to live and work, and this trend is set to continue over the coming years, as our communities are constantly changing. This is of course to be celebrated, as all of our diverse communities enrich life in West Suffolk. However, a constantly changing demographic brings with it a number of challenges for the NHS West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group (WSCCG).
The NHS is available to all, free at the point of delivery.
WSCCG is committed to buying fair, accessible, appropriate and sensitive health services for all of our communities. We are also committed to being a fair, inclusive and diverse employer.
To support this commitment, we have developed the WSCCG Equality and Diversity Strategy 2012- 2015
WSCCG has been reviewing its performance on equality and diversity across the organisation. there have been two events held to measure how the CCG is performing against equality and diversity under the Equality Delivery System 2 (EDS2) – you can view the full EDS2 document by clicking here.
There was a public event on 6 September 2013 with our Community Engagement Group, other interested community groups and members of the public to look at equality and diversity issues that affect patients and the public. We also asked our staff and unions how they thought the organisation was doing with equality and diversity.
This has resulted in a grading of performance across all 18 outcomes of the NHS Equality Delivery System to help us highlight areas of strength and weakness across the organisation.
As a result the CCG has developed four equality objectives it will focus on, for at least 2014/15:
- Patients and carers experience joined-up healthcare, ensuring access to the right services at the right time
- The CCG will improve use of equality data and information about west Suffolk’s diverse population and communities to inform its work
- The CCG will improve the way that the Governing Body and Executive can learn from healthcare experiences of diverse and marginalised individuals, groups and carers
- Senior leaders and other managers provide leadership, support and motivation for their staff to uphold the CCG’s value of equality of opportunity to improve the health of those most in need
Work is now underway to make progress on these four areas, by implementing our action plan.
A second event was held on 2 June 2015 at the John Peel Centre for Creative Arts in Stowmarket. This saw both WSCCG and Ipswich and East Suffolk CCG, along with West Suffolk and Ipswich hospitals and Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (mental health providers) together scored against their objectives under EDS2. Details of scoring from this event and next steps will be available soon.
For more information, email email@example.com or call 01284 774 813.
Each year we publish equality information about our staff and our communities. Please see the reports below for the latest information:
NHS Equality Delivery System
We have adopted the NHS Equality Delivery System (EDS) to ensure we meet and exceed our requirements under the public sector equality duty. We will use the EDS to:
- Maintain good equalities and diversity practice throughout the work of the organisation – both as a commissioner of services and as an employer
- Using existing information, identify areas in which equalities needs to be addressed
- Where information is missing, identify actions to gather relevant information
- Develop ways to address known inequalities
- Priorities our equality objectives
More information on the EDS is available here.
A key part of having due regard to the three main aims of the general equality duty is to ensure that the impact on equality is taken into account at the early stages of the CCG’s policy development and review. West Suffolk CCG is committed to embedding equality analysis into its processes to ensure our policies, practices and decisions further the aims of the equality duty.
Equality analysis should start early in the policy or service development process, or at the early stages of a review. Download our Tool kit for Equality analysis template .
Equality Act 2010
The Equality Act 2010 was introduced in October 2010 to bring together and strengthen all previous anti-discrimination law. The Equality Act protects people with the following nine ‘protected characteristics’ from discrimination:
- Gender reassignment
- Marriage and civil partnership
- Pregnancy and maternity
- Religion and belief
- Sexual orientation
Public sector equality duty
A major part of the Act is the public sector equality duty. There are two parts to the public sector equality duty: the general equality duty and the specific duties.
The general equality duty requires public bodies in the course of developing policies and delivering services, to have due regard to the need to:
- Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Act
- Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not
- Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not
The term ‘having due regard’ means:
Removing or minimising disadvantages suffered by people due to their protected characteristics
- Taking steps to meet the needs of people from protected characteristics where these are different from the needs of other people
- Encouraging people from protected groups to participate in public life or in other activities where their participation is disproportionately low
The specific duties have been designed to help public bodies meet the requirements of the general equality duty. With that in mind, NHS West Suffolk CCG will:
- Publish equality information every year to demonstrate our compliance with the general equality duty: including equality information on our communities and our staff
- Prepare and publish one or more equality objectives every four years, to prioritise our work on equality and diversity