PECT Equalities Policy

EQUALITIES POLICY

INTRODUCTION

Peterborough Environment City Trust (PECT) and PECT Consultancy Limited’s (PCL) commitment to equality is embraced within all of our policies and working practices.

Our aim is to eliminate discrimination and unlawful practices through the integration of equality principles in the areas of employment, service commissioning, service provision and delivery.

This policy provides a framework within which all of our directors, employees and managers can work to ensure an integrated approach to equality.

1 EQUALITY STATEMENT

Both PECT and PCL are strongly committed to the elimination of discrimination and the integration of equality in employment, service commissioning, service provision and service delivery practices.

Our Equalities Policy is based on the principle that no one is discriminated against on the basis of race, religion, culture, ethnic origin, nationality, age, gender, sexual orientation, disability or marital status.

We acknowledge that potentially everyone in society can be discriminated against, and recognise that some groups are more likely than others to be discriminated against.

PECT and PCL will take all steps necessary to ensure the elimination of discrimination and the promotion of equality in line with its responsibilities under the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000.


2  POLICY STATEMENT

The aim of the Equalities Policy is to integrate equality principles and practices into policy development and implementation so that both PECT and PCL can:
- ensure that all individuals are treated equally with regard to their specific needs
- work towards the elimination of discrimination and all forms of harassment
- be a role model and influence others through good practice in employment, service commissioning, service provision and service delivery

To achieve the aim of the policy, both PECT and PCL will implement its statutory obligations under relevant legislation, specifically the:
- Equal Pay Act 1970
- Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974
- Sex Discrimination Act 1975
- Race Relations Act 1976
- Disability and Equalities Act 2010
- Human Rights Act 1998
- Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000
- Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006
and any associated Codes of Practice. 

Both PECT and PCL are committed to developing, implementing and reviewing its policy in consultation with Directors, employees, and external partners.


Five core values provide a framework within which all Directors, employees, managers and trade unions can work to achieve the aims of the policy. They are:
Equality  Recognising that everyone is of equal value and should be respected according to their individual needs and abilities
Equity Being fair, reasonable and just in all PECT/PCLs activities
Empowerment  Encouraging people to take on responsibility so that they can influence and participate in decision making processes
Accessibility Providing equal access for all in employment, service commissioning, service provision and service delivery
Quality Achieving the highest standards in service commissioning, service provision and delivery


3 HOW WILL WE GET THERE?

The following are some of the core components of successfully implementing both PECT/PCLs Equalities Policy:

Policy Development and Implementation
All PECT/PCL policies will integrate equality considerations into policy development and implementation processes.
Communication 
Both PECT and PCL will ensure that its information is, where relevant, accessible to all sections of the community.
Employment Practices
Both PECT and PCL are committed to equal access to employment and recognise that some employment practices may discriminate against specific groups.  PECT and PCL are committed to eliminating discrimination in its policies and procedures.

To achieve this, both PECT and PCL will:
- ensure that recruitment and selection procedures are fair
- monitor recruitment and selection of PECT/PCLs workforce
- ensure that workplace practices are free from discrimination


4  CODE OF PRACTICE: CREATING A WORKING ENVIRONMENT

It is the responsibility of both PECT and PCL through Directors, employees and others acting on its behalf to work towards the implementation of this policy.

It is the responsibility of every employee, irrespective of their position in the organisation, to ensure that this policy is applied in practice, both in employment and in commissioning, providing and delivering services.

Both PECT and PCL are committed to the elimination of negative images and language in all its communications.

An additional responsibility falls on managers who have specific recruitment and personnel management responsibilities to ensure that their behaviour does not contravene this policy or the provisions of the Harassment and Bullying at Work Policy and Procedure.


APPENDIX 1: SUMMARY OF EQUALITIES LEGISLATION

The Equal Pay Act 1970
The Equal Pay Act 1970 makes it unlawful for any individual to be treated less favourably than a person of the opposite sex who works for the same employer. This is in relation to pay and other terms and conditions of employment, where they are employed in work that has been rated as equivalent under a job evaluation scheme or on work which is of equal value.

The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974
The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 exists to protect people from discrimination due to past convictions. A person convicted of a criminal offence can become rehabilitated after a defined period of time following conviction, through a conviction becoming ‘spent’, which allows the person to be treated for most purposes as if the conviction never occurred.

Convictions involving custodial sentences of over 30 months cannot become spent. For some professions and areas of employment the law requires disclosure of all convictions including those deemed to be spent.

The Sex Discrimination Act 1975
The Sex Discrimination Act makes it unlawful to discriminate directly or indirectly, on the grounds of sex or marital status against women, men or married persons; in employment, training and related matters, education, provision of goods, facilities and services, and in the disposal and management of premises.

The Race Relations Act 1976
The Race Relations Act 1976 makes it unlawful to discriminate directly or indirectly on the grounds of colour, nationality (including citizenship), ethnic origin or national origin. The Act makes racial discrimination unlawful in employment, training and related matters, education, provision of goods, facilities and services, and in the disposal and management of premises.

The Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000
The Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 came into force in April 2001 strengthening and extending the scope of the 1976 Race Relations Act. This first major reform of the 1976 Act, which arose in part following the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry, has been targeted at the public sector and prohibits racial discrimination by public authorities in all their functions. It places a new, enforceable positive duty on public authorities to eliminate discrimination and to promote racial equality.

The Disability and Equalities Act 2010
The DDA introduced measures aimed at ending discrimination on the grounds of disability. The Act’s provisions include employment, access to goods, services and facilities, and the buying and renting of land or property. The Act is being introduced on a staggered basis, with many of the Act’s provisions now being brought into force. The next stage is in 2004 when service providers will have a statutory obligation to take reasonable steps to remove physical barriers or provide services by other appropriate means.

The Human Rights Act 1998
The Human Rights Act 1998 came into force on 2 October 2000 and is one of the most significant pieces of constitutional legislation enacted in the United Kingdom.

The Act allows people to claim their rights under the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), in UK courts and tribunals instead of going to the European Court in Strasbourg. The Act requires all public authorities in the UK to act compatibly with the Convention rights and has significant implications for many areas of local government activity.

Policy as adopted by Peterborough Environment City Trust and PECT Consultancy Ltd - August 2006.