Promoting diversity isn't just something that employers should think about, it's a topic that we should all be aware of.
What does discrimination mean?
Discrimination is where you or someone else gets unfairly treated because of a bias that an individual or group of people may have against you.
The Government detail nine areas where discrimination can take place. These are also called 'protected characteristics', these are:
- Being or becoming a transsexual person
- Being married or in a civil partnership
- Being pregnant or on maternity leave
- Race including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin
- Religion, belief or lack of religion/belief
- Sexual orientation
Everyone should feel accepted and protected in all areas of their life, including:
- At work
- In education
- As a customer
- When using public services
- When buying or renting property
- As a member or guest of an association (including private clubs)
This protection comes from the Equality Act 2010.
How you can promote diversity
There are many ways that you can promote diversity -whether this is in the workplace, school/college or within your community.
- Think about what diversity means to you and how ideally you would want it to be demonstrated where you are. If you know what you want and are passionate about this idea, people will be more likely to join you in your vision.
- If you're filling in a survey that asks about your opinion on diversity, be honest. Having lots of ideas and thoughts about the subject of diversity is helpful for companies because it means that they know in what areas they can improve and strengthen in.
- If you read, see or hear something that you feel is discriminating against a certain group, speak to someone about it. Everyone's differences should be recognised, respected and valued and if there are changes to be made, then change it!
- Find organisations that are passionate about combating issues about diversity and find out what they do. A lot of these organisations are always looking for volunteers to help with events, fundraising or generally championing their cause.
- Know your rights! No matter your race, religion, sexual orientation, social or economic background, you should never be made to feel inferior or lower than someone else. Report any hate crimes to the police and find others that you can confidently speak to that you trust.
Here are some orgainsations that promote and champion diversity:
- Stonewall - their mission is to promote diversity in all people groups within commuinities, workplaces and institutions
- Equality and Diversity Forum - this website is a national network of equality and human rights orgainsations
- National Centre of Diversity - this charity helps businesses and organisations to develop and embed equality and fairness into their ethos and practices through learning and development
If you're an employer, find out how you can promote diversity and inclusion in your workplace.
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