The first partners module for the 2020-21 cohort was held on 10 September 2020 and focused on the NHS People Plan and equality standards.
Paul Deemer, head of diversity and inclusion at NHS Employers welcomed the 137 guests to the online event.
Baroness Ruth Hunt spoke about the importance of building an inclusive culture through raising awareness, understanding and reflection. She advocated the importance of creating a positive and safe environment in uncertain times, encouraging an inclusive culture. Ruth encouraged the partners to view inclusive culture through a change of mindsets and behaviours through five areas: individual, team, organisation, community and society.
Maya Hagege from Association du Francaise, Des Managers de la Diversite (AFMD) shared the journey of diversity management within the context of French history, legislation and the growth of diversity managers across the public and private sector in France. She highlighted four pillars of practice including; focus on individual and shared culture; team; equity and justice; cooperation and collaboration.
Interlude - Spoken word
Toria Garbutt a spoken word artist shared a selection of poetry about love, heartbreak and addiction.
Session 3 - In conversation with
Dr Christine Rivers, head of the Workforce Disability Equality Standard (WDES) and Dr Habib Navi MBE, interim director of the Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES), both from NHS England and NHS Improvement joined Paul Deemer in a conversation on their future hopes for both standards - linking to the People Plan. Christine emphasised the importance of viewing the WDES within the context of talent management, retention and staff with a disability progressing into leadership roles in the future. Whilst Habib emphasised the importance of converting more BAME applications into actual appointments in the future.
Session 4 - The role of diversity and inclusion in the NHS
Our final speaker of the day, Prerana Issar, chief people officer, NHS England and NHS Improvement spoke about the NHS People Plan, its practical and flexible nature and the four pillars; looking after people; fostering a sense of belonging; new ways of working and growth for the future. She emphasised the need for action and amplifying the work of equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI). Prerana also urged partners to speak up and not to view EDI as a nice to have but instead a key enabler in fulfilling the aims of the long-term plan and a tool for social justice. Prerana concluded by encouraging more risk taking to ensure EDI is viewed as an integral part of the emerging 44 local integrated care schemes and regional People Plans.
Date of next module
The second module of the partners programme will be held virtually on 9 December 2020.