According to the Government Equalities Review “an equal society protects and promotes equal, real freedom and opportunity to live in the way people value and would choose, so that everyone can flourish”. WYFRS recognises people’s different needs, situations and goals, and seeks to remove any barriers to both employment and the delivery of our services.
As a public authority subject to legal equality duties, WYFRA is required to consider the impact that individual’s characteristics (protected characteristics defined in the Equality Act 2010, as well as socio-economic, lifestyle and behavioural factors) may have on the life experiences and service expectations of members of West Yorkshire’s communities.
This is so important to us that equality and diversity are embedded in our 2015 – 2020 Service Plan, ensuring that our safe and skilled workforce delivers a proactive community safety programme and a professional and resilient emergency response service which meets the needs of our diverse communities.
In line with recommendations from the Equality and Human Rights Commission our equality objectives are an integral part of the business plan. The majority of our key Diversity and Inclusion activity is delivered through the Equality Action Plan, and scrutinised by a Corporate Driving Diversity Board made up of staff members from different areas of the organisation.
We are passionate about our workforce. Recording and publishing information about the diversity of our employees helps us ensure no-one is experiencing disproportionate disadvantage in accordance with the general equality duty. A report on workforce diversity is provided to the Authority’s Human Resources Committee at least once a year. The latest report will be published in April 2016.
Engaging with Communities
While there is no explicit legal requirement under the general duty to engage with people from the nine protected characteristics, WYFRS acknowledges the importance of an adequate evidence base for any decisions we make. Engagement with the community and our employees is a continuous process and evidence/data is used to tailor the services we provide and employment practices we introduce. WYFRS’s priorities are our most vulnerable communities who are at risk from fire, fire related injuries and road traffic incidents.
Each District’s Risk Reduction Plan describes the partnerships and initiatives designed to reach those most at risk, strengthen links with local communities and make the most vulnerable groups safer. Examples of outcomes achieved for the community and employees can be found in our case studies.
In addition to on-going consultation with all our employees we have worked with a wide range of local communities including new parents; people with dementia and their carers; various religious groups, people with learning difficulties; gypsy and travellers; and young people.
If you require further information please contact Corporate Diversity by emailing:firstname.lastname@example.org