This month sees the Environment Agency running their declarations (Self disclosure) campaign.
Joanne Hoare, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Business Partner says “to enable the Environment Agency to benefit from diversity and to continue to support employees to be the best they can, each year we have a self disclosure campaign and we ask employees to review and update their diversity information.”
We have an ambition for the Environment Agency to be the best employer in the country for equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and this #DiversityDataMatters campaign is one of the ways we will help to deliver the outcomes in our EDI Delivery Plan.
An integral part of the plan is promoting inclusivity and having fair and transparent practices and without this data we cannot make evidence-based decisions to make the Environment Agency an inclusive place to work and ensure we support everyone, whatever their background.
By understanding the diversity of the organisation we can prioritise what we need to focus on ensuring that line managers and employees are supported. The information helps us to identify any unconscious bias and where any policies or practices may unintentionally disadvantage a particular group.
In previous years, information received from employee diversity data has helped leadership teams identify 'people priorities'. It's supported the setting up of a number of new networks in 2018 for Autism, Stammering and Carers and it has also been key in the introduction of policies such as those for Workplace Adjustments, Disability Leave and the Trans, non-binary and intersex policy.
Taz Jagdev, Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) Employee Network Co-Lead explains why it is important:
Link to https://www.vercida.com/uk/features/the-bame-network-at-environment-agency?company=163
The BAME network at the Environment Agency
“Diversity information plays a huge part in ensuring we can make this a more inclusive workplace.One way it is used is to encourage pay gap reporting. The BAME Employee Network works closely with our Executive Race Champions, and our HR Diversity team to look at practical measures on reducing the pay gap for race. This is only possible with up-to-date and complete diversity information.
Everyone has the right to be their true selves at work and to be treated equally and fairly. Sharing this diversity information helps turn this aspiration into an everyday reality for all staff.”
In April 2017 the government amended the Equality Act 2010 making it mandatory for every organisation with over 250 employees to publish their gender pay gap.
While the legislation only requires us to report our pay gap for gender, as part of our culture is to embrace difference: include everyone, the Environment Agency have, for the second year running, reviewed and published our pay gap for all possible protected characteristics, (Disability, Race, Religion and belief and Sexual orientation)
The data is also used to review performance decisions to ensure that we have fair and transparent processes, and to inform the decisions they make about our approach to development and performance, so that what we do and how we do it helps employees to be themselves and be their best
It is also used to track recruitment and be able to take further action to promote opportunities to people that don’t apply or adjust our selection processes if we are losing a particular group through the assessment process.
Taz Jagdev, Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) Employee Network Co-Lead