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The importance of diversity, equality and inclusion

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Diversity – Diversity literally means difference. Diversity recongises that although people have things in common with each other, thay are also different and unique in many ways. Diversity is about recognising and valuing those differences. Diversity therefore consists of visual and non-visual factors, which include personal characteristics such as background, culture, personality and work-style in addition to the characteristics that are protected under legislation in terms of race, disability, gender, religion and belief, sexual orientation and age.

Equality – Equality is about ‘creating a fairer society, where everyone can participate and has the opportunity to fulfill their potential’. Equality mean being equal in status, rights and opportunites, no matter what their race, disability, gender religion, beliefs and cultural differences, sexual orientation and age.

Inclusion – Inclusion is a sense of belonging, feeling included, feeling respected, valued for who you are even if the persons lacks some advantages, feeling a level of supportive energy and commitment from others so then you can achieve your best. Inclusion ensures everyone has access to resources, rights, goods and services, and are able to participate in activities.

Discrimination – Discrimination is when a person is treated less favourably or receives a worse service than others because of their age, gender, race, sexuality or ability. In a care setting, treating everyone the same can be discriminatory because some people will have their needs met sufficiently while others may not.

1.2 – Describe how direct or indirect discrimination may occur in the work setting

Discrimination can occur directly (intentionally) and indirectly (unintentionally). As mentioned above if everyone in your workplace was treated the same this would be discriminatory. Perhaps 9/10 people like a particular food and it is served for lunch, it is classed as discriminatory to the 1 person that doesn’t like that food. Choices must be offered, needs and preferences met. Makings assumptions such as; all elderly people like to sit and watch TV all day is a form of discrimination called ‘stereotyping’. If a care institution has activities planned they need to be accessible for all service users. For example: if Bingo is arranged service users need to be able to hear the numbers called; if scrabbled is played, service users need to be able to see the letters. These types of discrimination may not be deliberate, but your own and others behaviours should be monitored to avoid discrimination in the work place.

1.3 – Explain how practices that support diversity, equality and inclusion reduce the likelihood of discrimination.

Inclusive practice means that positive efforts aremade to ensure that everyone is included and treated equally regardless of race, ability, age, gender etc. Inclusive practice promotes equality and supports diversity by ensuring that each service user is treated as an individual and not excluded or isolated and so reduces the chance of discrimination. By tailoring each individual’s care package to accommodate their own personal needs and preferences and by embracing and valuing their differences, it allows individuals to reach their full potential and ensures inclusive practice.

No two service users are the same, so by identifying their individual needs, it promotes a sense of inclusion, equality and diversity. Inclusion takes place by ensuring that each individual is treated equally and by recongising their diversity, when assessing their care requirements and making sure this is included into their care plan.

Whilst caring for an individuali promote equality by checking individual’s needs and preferences are being met and immediately reporting any changes or problems. I make service users aware of the choices available and support empowerment. I encourage individuals to take part in activities in order to help them achieve their full potential. I report and comments or complaints they have regarding their care.

I plan and adapt the care I provide to ensure each individual is treated equally. By establishing their individual needs, I promote inclusion by ensuring the care fits around their needs and preferences, despite any differences. I adopt inclusive values and practices, work respectively with service users and respond positively to diversity.

OUTCOME 2 – Know how to work in an inclusive way

2.1 – List key legislation and codes of practice relating to diversity, equality, inclusion and discrimination in adult social care settings
Skills for Care Code of Conduct
The Equality Act 2010
The Human Rights Act 1998
The Care Act 2014
The Health and Social Care Act 2012
The Mental Capacity Act 2005
2.2 – Describe how to interact with individuals in an inclusive way
An ideal way to interact with individuals in an inclusive way would be:
To enable the individual to be completely involved in their daily life
To be respectful of them at all times
To be open to their needs, wishes, views, beliefs and culture.
To take a genuine interest in the individual
To communicate with them in a way that they are comfortable with
To offer choices at every possible opportunity
2.3 – Describe ways in which discrimination may be challenged in adult social care settings

Example 1 – An individual you are supporting is unable to reach the counter at the checkout to pay for their shopping:

You could speak to a staff member and explain the situation. You could also ask to speak to the Manager or write to the company’s head office and explain the issue from the individual’s point of view. You could ask the store for a copy of their complaints procedure. You could also make the shop aware that they are practicing discriminatory practice by not allowing the individual to pay for their own purchases at the counter. You could suggest a short term “fix” for the problem by asking them to arrange a personal shopper for the individual until the problem can be rectified.
Example 2 – You notice a colleague continuously refuses to support or treat an individual and they have said it is because of the individuals sexual orientation:

I would speak to the colleague and explain to them that what they were doing was discrimination and unlawful. I would refer them to out workplace policies and procedures and perhaps suggest that they should attend equality and diversity training. I would report the matter to my manager for further information and advice

OUTCOME 3 – Know how to access information, advice and support about diversity, equality, inclusion and discrimination

3.1 – Identify sources of information, advice and support about diversity, equality, inclusion and discrimination
by attending diversity and equality training in your workplace
from the media; TV, radio , social.
Professional care related organisations – Care Quality Commission (CQC)
Line managers.
3.2 – Describe how and when to access information, advice and support about diversity, equality, inclusion and discrimination
My line manager is always available for advice and support if I am having difficulty promoting diversity, equality and inclusion.

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