The department recognises the immense value that staff support networks can bring to improving our workplace and also, importantly, our public policy. The networks provide direct support in the form of advice and training to their members. They provide insights into and perspectives about the diversity of our people, and run conferences and seminars to keep staff better informed about being responsive to differing needs. They have been instrumental as internal resources in increasing our understanding of how to better engage our stakeholders and the communities and individuals we come into contact with. It is vital to have internal critical friends to keep us focussed on creating an inclusive and engaged department. This role is increasingly important in an environment of reducing public expenditure.
While external benchmarks are important, we also recognise the immense value that staff support networks can add to our workplace and our public policy.
As an internal resource they have been instrumental in understanding how we can better engage with our stakeholders and the communities we serve.
Our internal networks take on a critical role, keeping us focused on creating an inclusive and engaged department. This role is increasingly important in an environment where public expenditure is being reduced.
We formally recognise and support the following staff support networks:
THE NETWORK - for minority ethnic staff
Home Office Disability Support (HODS)
Spectrum - for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender staff
a:gender - the cross-government network for transgender, transsexual and intersex staff
Home Office Women
We also recognise a number of faith-based informal networks, which provide invaluable insights into religion and belief. These networks include:
Home Office Christians
Home Office Islamic Network
The Hindu Connection
Home Office Sikh Association
The Group Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (GEDI) team provides the networks with the support to operate effectively. They have also produced guidance on how to establish a voluntary staff network.