Thanks to Barbara Brown for contributions to these pages.
WHAT DO WE MEAN BY EQUALITY AND DIVERSITY?
Equality is about making sure people are
treated fairly and given fair chances. Equality is not about treating
everyone in the same way, but it recognises that their needs are met in
Equality focuses on those areas covered by the law, namely the key areas of race, gender, disability, religion or belief, sexual orientation and age. In addition to the legislation which seeks to prevent discrimination in all these areas, we have a public duty to promote equality and remove discrimination in race, gender and disability.
People must not be unfairly discriminated against because of any of these factors and we must all contribute to creating a positive workplace environment where discriminatory practices and discrimination no longer happen.
Diversity is about valuing individual difference. So 'diversity' is much more than just a new word for equality. A diversity approach aims to recognise, value and manage difference to enable all learners to contribute and realise their full potential. Diversity challenges us to recognise and value all sorts of differences in order to make any teaching organisation a better place for everyone to learn.
WHY ARE EQUALITY AND DIVERSITY SO IMPORTANT?
Diversity is also about recognising that our learners come from different backgrounds. If we welcome diversity as colleagues, value each other and treat each other fairly, we will work better together. In doing so we will provide a better service to our students.
As teachers, it will help our communities to approach us and use our services if we have a diverse student group that feels comfortable with and understands their different needs. So diversity will also contribute to improving the learning we provide. (with thanks to Nottingham City Council)
For more detail on definitions see Glasgow Caledonian University's 'all inclusive' section of their website
WHAT ARE THE KEY THINGS I NEED TO KNOW ABOUT EQUALITY AND DIVERSITY
The Six Strands of Equality
A nice section on Worfcester Council's website with definitions, further links and information
We often talk about equality referring to "strands". While it is important not to put people into boxes, the law has meant that we need to look at equality in terms of certain headings.
Select a box below to find out definitions, facts, useful contacts and websites related to the strand.
Since October 2010, an additional strand has been added by the Equality Act 2010, that of Transgender Equality
Direct discrimination occurs when someone receives less favourable treatment on the basis of characteristics or stereotyped assumptions which are not work or study related.
WHAT IS INDIRECT DISCRIMINATION?
Indirect discrimination occurs when policies and practices which appear neutral or fair because they are applied to everyone, have a different and disadvantageous impact on groups of people, covered by equal opportunity legislation, at work or in study. For example, if a selection or promotion criteria would put a certain racial or ethnic or national group at a disadvantage. To justify indirect discrimination, the employer must establish that the aims of the measures were not achievable by another method.