Artists Attic Trust 

Controlled Document 

Document Name: Equal Opportunities Policy 

Document Version Number 1 

Agreed by Committee on: 10th February 2022 

Approved by Board of Trustees on: 14th February 2022 

Review Schedule Every two years 

Next review due February 2024

Document Description 

Artists Attic Trust , as an employer and service provider, has a part to play in reducing the  disadvantages which certain people and groups have experienced. We also want our staff  and volunteers to be truly representative of the community they service. This policy sets  out how we aim to achieve this.

Implementation & Quality Assurance 

Implementation is immediate and this Policy shall stay in force until any alterations are  formally agreed. 

The Policy will be reviewed every two years by the Board of Trustees, sooner if legislation,  best practice or other circumstances indicate this is necessary.  

All aspects of this Policy shall be open to review at any time. If you have any comments or  suggestions on the content of this policy please contact: Eugene Robinson,  eugene@artistsattictrust.co.uk , 07896426066

Introduction 

Artists Attic Trust, as an employer and service provider, has a part to play in reducing  the disadvantages which certain people and groups have experienced, both now and  in the past. We also want our staff and volunteers to be truly representative of the  community they serve. 

We extend the same principle to everyone. We recognise that, while much can be  achieved through developing policies and procedures to meet our legal and other  obligations, real progress requires a programme of action that involves the  participation of our staff and volunteers. Genuine Equal Opportunities in every  workplace and every service requires a commitment from everyone. 

The Law 

We wholeheartedly accept the statutory requirements laid down in the Equality Act. It  is unlawful to discriminate directly or indirectly in recruitment or employment because  of age, disability, sex, gender re-assignment, pregnancy, parenthood, race (which  includes colour, nationality and ethnic or national origins), sexual orientation, religion  or belief, or because someone is married or in a civil partnership. These are known  as ‘protected characteristics’. 

In addition, staff should not discriminate against or harass a member of the public in  the provision of services. It is unlawful to fail to make reasonable adjustments to  overcome barriers to using services caused by disability. The duty to make  reasonable adjustments includes the removal, adaptation or alteration of physical  features, if the physical features make it impossible or unreasonably difficult for  disabled people to make use of services. In addition, service providers have an  obligation to think ahead and address any barriers that may impede disabled people  from accessing a service. 

Unlawful discrimination can include: 

Direct discrimination – where a person is treated less favourably than another  because of a protected characteristic 

  • Indirect discrimination – where a provision, criterion or practice is applied that is  discriminatory in relation to individuals who have a relevant protected  characteristic.

  • Harassment – where there is unwanted conduct, related to one of the protected  characteristics. 

  • Perceptive discrimination – where an individual is directly discriminated against  or harassed based on a perception that he/she has a particular protected  characteristic. 

  • Third-party harassment – when an employee is harassed by third parties such as  clients and the Associative discrimination – where an individual is directly  discriminated against or harassment is related to a protected characteristic and  the employer has failed to take action. 

  • Victimisation – where an employee is subject to a detriment because he/she has  made or supported a complaint or raised a grievance, or because he/she is  suspected of doing so. 

  • Failure to make reasonable adjustments – where a physical feature or a  provision, criterion or practice puts a disabled person at a substantial  disadvantage compared with someone who does not have that protected  characteristic and the employer has failed to make reasonable adjustments to  enable the disabled person to overcome the disadvantage. 

The following statements of policy provide a framework within which we will seek to  develop programmes and initiatives. 

Responsibilities 

The Charity’s trustees and senior management team are responsible for promoting  equal opportunities. 

All staff, volunteers and trustees of the Charity share the responsibility for ensuring  that the Equal Opportunities Policy is promoted and implemented fairly and  effectively. 

The Director will ensure the implementation and effectiveness of the policy and  report to the board annually It is, however, the responsibility of the Charity’s  management team and service co-ordinators actively to promote equality of  opportunity in their respective departments and services. 

It is the individual responsibility of every member of staff and all volunteers to seek to  ensure the practical application of the policy. Artists Attic Trust  wishes to state  explicitly that acts of direct and indirect discrimination and failure to comply with the  provisions of the policy cannot and will not be tolerated and will be investigated.  Disciplinary action may then be taken against the individual(s) concerned.

In addition, if any member of staff or volunteer considers that he or she is the subject  of, or witnesses, unequal treatment, a complaint may be made through the agreed  procedures for dealing with grievances, harassment or whistleblowing.  

Equal Opportunities in Employment and Volunteering 

Statement of Policy 

Artists Attic Trust  aims to achieve genuine equality of opportunity in all aspects of its  activities as an employer and in its engagement of volunteers.  

Implementation 

This policy is made available to all new staff via the Policy Handbook and copies are  available on the website. Volunteers are asked to refer to the website for the policy  although a paper copy can be made available if this is a difficulty for them. The  principles and practices of the policy are covered by their Line Manager during  induction and also during the Introduction to Artists Attic Trust .  

Service Coordinators are advised of any revisions to the policy and asked to pass  the information to their teams (both staff and volunteers). Information about the  changes is also given in In the Loop (staff newsletter). The updated policy is also  uploaded to the website.  

Staff 

  • Artists Attic Trust  will ensure that the ways in which jobs are designed, advertised  and filled meet the requirements of our equal opportunities policy and the  Equality Act. 

  • Information, training, advice and guidance, as appropriate, will be given to those  staff and trustees involved in the recruitment and selection process. • Permanent paid posts will normally be advertised externally, and all posts will be  advertised internally within Artists Attic Trust  as a minimum. Advertisements, job  descriptions, application forms and person specifications for each job will be  designed to ensure that no unnecessary requirements or qualifications are called  for. Unrelated criminal convictions will not be taken into account. • All potential applicants for jobs will be asked to complete and return a diversity  monitoring form so that we can check how inclusive our recruitment processes  are. 

  • Interviews will take an unbiased approach, asking only those questions which  relate to the job and are non-discriminatory.

Volunteers 

  • Interviewers will take an unbiased approach, asking only those questions  which relate to the task or role and are non-discriminatory. 

  • Applicants will be supported within the interview process and in their ongoing  engagement according to their needs and within the resources at our  disposal. 

  • Links will be sought with a diverse range of groups to promote and encourage  the recruitment of volunteers from all backgrounds. 

  • Volunteers will be placed on the basis of their knowledge, skills, experience  and ability. Where no suitable opportunity exists within Artists Attic Trust  alternatives will be suggested. 

  • Personal details of volunteers will be confidential to those members of staff  dealing with recruitment. The only information passed to other staff will be  that necessary to ensure appropriate support for the volunteers. 

  • All potential applicants for volunteer roles will be asked to complete and return  a diversity monitoring form so that we can check how inclusive our recruitment  processes are.  

  • The reasons for not placing someone as a volunteer will be recorded.

Equal Opportunities in Service Delivery 

Statement of Policy 

We recognise that certain groups in our society are discriminated against, directly or  indirectly, intentionally or unintentionally. Direct and indirect discrimination can occur  when services are inappropriate, insensitive or inaccessible.  

We are committed to providing quality services to our service users. We aim to  promote equal access and appropriate levels of take-up of our services and facilities  by all groups in the community. 

Implementation 

  • All older people with whom we work will be accorded equal respect and the  same courteous, efficient approach. We aim to offer a warm and welcoming  environment to all service users. 

  • The diversity of older people is acknowledged and valued and access to services  shall be according to our published service criteria alone. 

  • Service users will be asked to complete a diversity monitoring form in order for  us to check and review how inclusive our services are. 

  • Our services aim to respond to such diversity by adopting a flexible, non judgemental, anti-discriminatory approach that values each individual equally. 

  • Our services seek to provide each individual service user with a service that  meets their individual needs and choices, within available resources.

  • We aim to make the physical environment in which services are provided as  accessible and inclusive as possible.  

  • We shall continually review our service provision in order to develop more  inclusive ways of working that more appropriately meet the diverse needs of the  local community. 

We shall ensure, as far as is possible, that all our service activities and sites  are accessible in accordance with the Equality Act. We are committed to  challenging discrimination within our service provision through focussed staff and volunteer  training, development and support and a culture that respects and values the  individual.  

Monitoring  

The success of any policy depends upon the commitment of all employees and  volunteers but particularly of senior management and Trustees. The effectiveness of  the policy in meeting the aims of the Charity can be judged by careful monitoring of  the operation of the policy. We aim to produce monitoring reports on a regular basis  covering staff and volunteer recruitment, training and development, and staff and  volunteer turnover. As part of the service planning process, the management team  will also monitor the take-up of services.