Promoting Equality and Diversity

1. Equality and Diversity for Children and Young People

The Fostering Service is committed to delivering care and providing services that are inclusive and non-discriminatory. This includes (but is not limited to) not discriminating (directly or indirectly) on the basis of a protected characteristic under the Equality Act 2010:

  • Age;
  • Disability;
  • Gender reassignment;
  • Marriage and civil partnership;
  • Pregnancy and maternity;
  • Race;
  • Religion or belief;
  • Sex;
  • Sexual orientation.

Crimes committed against someone because of their disability, transgender-identity, race, religion or belief, or sexual orientation are hate crimes and should be reported to the police.

Hate crimes can include:

  • Threatening behaviour;
  • Assault;
  • Robbery;
  • Damage to property;
  • Inciting others to commit hate crimes;
  • Harassment;
  • Online abuse.

You can report hate crime online.

In addition:

  1. We encourage children to develop respect for themselves and for others;
  2. We deliver services that recognise and build on the strengths of children and young people from all cultures, religions, gender, age, sexual orientation, ability and backgrounds; in ways that meet their needs and help them to achieve their full potential;
  3. Foster carers should ensure every effort is made to ensure that homes are welcoming to all children and young people and others significant in their care and wellbeing. In addition to this, resources used to develop work with children and young people are chosen for their suitability, positive image and anti-oppressive nature;
  4. Children and young people are offered opportunities to try out new experiences, which are not restricted by traditional gender options;
  5. Foster carers are expected to challenge attitudes, behaviour and language that are non-inclusive and discriminatory, in a positive way. This includes bullying, homophobic behaviour, racism, sexism, radicalisation and any other forms of discrimination (direct or indirect);
  6. Children are supported and helped to treat others in a non-discriminatory way.

2. Inclusion for Children and Young People

  1. All children/young people are given the opportunity to be cared for and educated. Where possible this is alongside their peers in order to develop each child to reach their full potential;
  2. Children/young people are encouraged and supported to understand their rights and be well-informed about ways of challenging discrimination;
  3. Foster carers are expected to identify local community resources that contribute to meeting the needs of children/young people - these are highlighted and promoted and where they do not meet required needs alternatives are sought and suitably identified regardless of geographical location;
  4. Additional support accessed through supervision and training will be offered to foster carers who are finding difficulty in understanding diverse or complex situations for children.

3. Equality in Employment

  1. We will not discriminate, whether consciously or subconsciously, in making decisions;
  2. Promotion and advancement will be made on merit and all decisions relating to this will be made within the overall framework and principles of this policy;
  3. Job descriptions, where used, will be revised to ensure that they are in line with our equal opportunities policy. Job requirements will be reflected accurately in any person specifications;
  4. We will adopt a consistent, non-discriminatory approach to the advertising of the vacancies;
  5. We will not confine our recruitment to areas or media sources, which provide only, or mainly, applicants of a particular group;
  6. All applicants who apply for jobs with us will receive fair treatment and will be considered solely on their ability to do the job;
  7. All employees involved in the recruitment process will periodically review their selection criteria to ensure that they are related to the job requirements and do not unlawfully discriminate;
  8. More than one person will carry out short listing and interviewing where possible;
  9. Interview questions will be related to the requirements of the job and will not be of any discriminatory nature;
  10. We will not disqualify any applicant because they are unable to complete an application unassisted unless personal completion of the form is a valid test of the standard of English required for the safe and effective performance of the job;
  11. Selection decisions will not be influenced by any perceived prejudices of other staff.

3.1 Disability Discrimination

We believe in providing a welcoming, comfortable and accessible environment that is safe and easy to use for children, parents, relatives, foster carers and staff. We will endeavour to achieve equality of opportunity for all to ensure equal access to its facilities. Where possible, we will avoid physical features that make it difficult for people with a disability and make reasonable adjustments to improve the environment.