This statement describes how the Board of Trustees of Victoria Academies Trust intends to fulfil its responsibilities under the Public Sector Equality Duty with regard to its workforce. The Equality Objectives will be part of the Trust’s Development Plan and is applicable to all our academies.
We will have due regard to the need to:
- Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment, victimisation and any other conduct prohibited by the Equality Act.
- Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it: and
- Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not share it.
We will collect and use equality information to help us to:
- Identify key issues
- Understand the impact of our policies, practices and decisions on people with different protected characteristics, and thereby plan them more effectively.
- Assess whether we are discriminating unlawfully when carrying out any of our functions.
- Identify what the key equality issues are for our organisation.
- Assess performance
- Benchmark our performance and processes against those of similar organisations, nationally or locally.
- Consider taking steps to meet the needs of staff who share relevant protected characteristics.
- Identify if there are any actions we can take to avoid discrimination and harassment, advance equality of opportunity or foster good relations.
- Make informed decisions about policies and practices which are based on the impact of our activities on equality.
- Develop objectives to meet the specific duties.
- Have due regard to the aims of the general equality duty by ensuring that staff have appropriate information for decision-making.
We will work towards developing an equality profile of staff to help us to understand key equality issues in our workforce, including any evidence of pay gaps or ‘occupational segregation’ ie. Staff
with certain protected characteristics being over represented in particular roles, for example, women as cleaners, or at certain grades. In addition, we note that it is likely to be useful to collect and consider information, appropriately disaggregated, about:
- Recruitment and promotion
- Numbers of part-time and full-time staf
- Pay and remuneration
- Return to work of women on maternity leave
- Return to work of disabled employees following sick leave relating to their disability
- Grievances (including about harassment)
- Disciplinary action (including for harassment)
- Dismissals and other reasons for leaving.
We will publish relevant, proportionate information which is broad enough to give a full picture of performance across our schools. We will demonstrate how we have used this information to have due regard to all three aims of the duty, for all relevant protected characteristics. Our information will usually fall into two main categories:
- Information to identify equality issues. Examples of this include monitoring information about employees, information about the effect of our activities on people with different protected characteristics or any engagement we may have carried out.
- Information about steps taken to have due regard to the aims of the general equality duty. For example, any records we have about how we had due regard in making certain decisions, information that was considered in that decision-making (including engagement), consideration of steps to mitigate adverse impacts, or details of policies to address equality concerns.
We note that the Equalities and Human Rights Commission would normally expect to see the following information:
- The race, disability, gender and age distribution of our workforce at different grades, and whether they are full or part time
- An indication of the likely representation on sexual orientation and religion and belief, provided that no-one can be identified as a result
- An indication of any issues for transsexual staff, based on engagement with transsexual staff or equality organisations
- Gender pay gap information
- Information about occupational segregation
- Grievance and dismissal information for people with relevant protected characteristics
- Complaints about discrimination and other prohibited conduct from staff
- Details and feedback of engagement with staff and trade unions
- Quantitative and qualitative research with employees e.g. staff surveys
- Records of how we have had due regard to the aims of the duty in decision-making with regard to our employment, including any assessments of impact on equality and any evidence used
- Details of policies and programmes that have been put into place to address equality concerns raised by staff and trade unions