Diversity and inclusion partners programme 2019/20

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The diversity and inclusion partners programme supports participating trusts to progress and develop their equality performance over a period of 12 months, and is closely aligned to the Equality Delivery System (EDS2).  Applications opened on 21 January 2019 for the 2019/20 programme. 

The programme is delivered across four modules - standards, capacity, delivery and evaluation. The modules are held quarterly in the form of a one day event which bring together diversity and inclusion partners from across the country. 

What does being a diversity and inclusion partner mean?

The programme supports participating trusts to progress and develop their equality performance and to build capacity. At the same time it provides an opportunity for partners to share advice, guidance and demonstrate good practice in equality and diversity management to the wider NHS.

Watch our short video and hear from current partners participating in the programme.



Partners are supported in a number of ways:

  • Continuous improvement around equality and diversity within their own organisation.
  • Raising awareness of what constitutes sustainable, outcome-focused improvement in managing equality and diversity across their region.
  • Acting as a thermometer by which NHS Employers can determine the key issues facing the wider NHS, so that advice and guidance is relevant and up to date.
  • Contributing to the development of emerging good practice and providing a channel for collecting case studies from which others can learn, within the wider context of NHS initiatives.
  • Contributing to a broader understanding of equality and diversity, across both the NHS and the wider public sector, in the context of quality, innovation, productivity and disease prevention.

What are the benefits of being a partner?

We work closely with our partners and support them to embed equality and diversity in their organisation. There are a number of other key benefits for NHS organisations in becoming a partner.

  • Increased profile of your organisation at network events, conferences and through the NHS Employers website and communications.
  • Advice, guidance and assistance from NHS Employers in meeting the minimum requirements of the Equality Act 2010.
  • Free access to training, development, coaching and mentoring for the partner lead person on the use of the tools and techniques within the programme.
  • Opportunities to discuss, network and test out new concepts within the safe environment of partner meetings.
  • Opportunity to influence national policy direction.
  • In some cases, indirect benefits of NHS Employers’ membership of national forums, such as the Employers Network for Equality and Inclusion.

Application process

The closing date for applications was Friday 1 March 2019. Due to the high demand for places, the number of applications accepted for selection to the programme will be capped at 50. Organisations are welcome to start making contact with us about the partner programme application 2019/2020.

If you have any questions about the partners programme please email the team at diversityandinclusion@nhsemployers.org.


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