Equality Diversity and Inclusion Policy

  1. Introduction
    1. The Voluntary Hospital (VH) celebrates the diverse cultures, communities and environments that make up our charity and the people we serve and support.
    2. We recognise that certain people receive unequal opportunities and suffer discrimination (Appendix 1). This policy is designed to prevent such problems occurring in all activities of the VH.
  2. Aims
    1. The VH is committed to:
      1. Promoting equality, inclusion and diversity in all areas of our work and influence.
      2. The elimination of unlawful discrimination, harassment, bullying and victimisation.
      3. The principle of equality of opportunity for all its beneficiaries, employees, consultants, contractors, volunteers and trustees, and their being treated with respect and dignity.
      4. Including and representing the diversity of the community we serve.
  3. Objectives
    1. The VH commits to:
      1. Recruit, employ, develop, fund, promote and value people, irrespective of any of the protected characteristics, as set out in the Equality Act of 2010 (Appendix 1).
      2. Adopt anti-discriminatory policies, structures and practices, including procedures set out in any other VH policies to address employment, recruitment of trustees and decisions on benefits and grants.
      3. Not tolerating: direct or indirect discrimination, victimisation, bullying or harassment (Appendix 2).
      4. Ensure that recruitment and selection of trustees and staff is transparent, merit-based and fair.
      5. Make adjustments, wherever possible and within our financial resources, to enable full participation in our activities for those with disabilities.
      6. Complying with all relevant legislation and regulations (Appendix 1).
    2. We require that all employees, consultants, contractors, volunteers and trustees use their best endeavours to ensure that no one in their dealings with the VH suffers discrimination, harassment, bullying or victimisation because of a protected characteristic (Appendix 1) or other unjustified reasons.
  4. Learning and Development
    1. We recognise the need to ensure all trustees, staff, consultants, contactors, and volunteers are fully aware of their own responsibilities and will ensure that appropriate training and support is offered, where appropriate.
    2. The VH commits to:
      1. Establish or source training programmes for all staff and trustees to integrate EDI requirements into all its activities.
      2. Monitor and record completed training programmes and their expiry dates for staff and trustees.
      3. Ensure that the VH’s commitment to equality and diversity is communicated to all new members of staff and trustees as part of their induction into the organisation.
  5. Communication
    1. The VH commits to:
      1. Ensuring existing communications promote inclusiveness.
      2. Inclusive communication imagery and graphics, which reflect and reinforce the words within all documentation.
      3. Publishing this policy on the VH website.
  6. Measurement and Monitoring
    1. Overall responsibility for monitoring the effectiveness of this policy lies with the Board.
    2. The VH commits to:
      1. Working towards collecting data to measure our compliance with our policy, which will be reported in annual progress reports.
      2. Highlight changes made and areas where improvement is necessary by means of this annual report.
      3. Comply with the requirements of the Data Protection Act 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulation 2016 in the way that any data is stored and used.
      4. Review the policy itself on an annual basis to reflect changes in the law, demographics and internal requirements of the organisation.
    3. The ideal composition of a Charity Board, which is compliant with this EDI policy (Appendix 3).


This policy was written by the nominations sub-committee, while considering Charity Commission and related guidance, and includes items taken from the EDI policies of the Barts Charity, British Red Cross, The Company of Nurses and Mind Over Mountains. The nominations sub-committee members were: Brenda Griffiths, Angela Robinson, and Peter White (Chair). Martin Webster and Elizabeth Clark were observers.


Barts Charity: https://www.bartscharity.org.uk/about-us/our-commitment-to-equity-diversity-and-inclusion/

British Red Cross: https://www.redcross.org.uk/about-us/how-we-are-run/our-policies/equality-and-diversity-policy

Charity Commission guidance: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/equality-act-guidance-for-charities/equality-act-guidance-for-charities#complying-with-the-act and https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/equality-act-guidance-for-charities

Charity Governance Code: https://www.charitygovernancecode.org/en/6-diversity

Mind over Mountains: https://mindovermountains.org.uk/

National Council for Voluntary Organisations: https://www.ncvo.org.uk/help-and-guidance/#/

Small Charities Coalition: https://www.smallcharities.org.uk/diversity-inclusion-equality-cohesi

The Company of Nurses: https://www.companyofnurses.co.uk/