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Our Policies

CONTENTS    

1.  Scope of Policy  

2.  Policy Summary  

3.  Policy Statements  

4.  Gender  

5.  Sexual Orientation  

6.  Disability  

7.  Religious Observance or Belief  

8.  Race and Ethnicity  

9.  Age  

10. Gender reassignment  

11. Marriage and Civil Partnerships  

12. Pregnancy and Maternity  

13. Monitoring Equality (Equality analysis)  

13.1  Employment  

13.2  Students  

14. Meeting our duties  

1.         SCOPE OF POLICY 

EDLounge Ltd. is committed to creating an environment where learners, customers, staff and other stakeholders respect and promote equality and diversity in all activities. 

We will work towards achieving: 

  • A richly diverse staff and student body which respects the protected characteristics of the Equality Act 2010
  • Equivalent levels of satisfaction and success rates for all groups of learners
  • Good progression rates for all groups of learners  

2.        POLICY SUMMARY 

EDLounge Ltd. is committed to creating a working and learning environment where everyone:  

  • Is fully respected
  • Is listened to and encouraged to give their views
  • Feels welcome
  • Is treated in a friendly way
  • Is treated in a fair way
  • Has equality of opportunity
  • Has full access to all activities wherever possible 

2.1      The General Duty 

In accordance with the general equality duty EDLounge Ltd. will, in carrying out its functions, have due regard to the need to: 

  • Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Equality Act 2010
  • Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not; and
  • Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not. 

Eliminating discrimination and advancing equality of opportunity involves: 

  • Removing or minimising disadvantages suffered by people due to their protected characteristics;
  • Taking steps to meet the needs of people from protected groups where these are different from the needs of other people;
  • Encouraging people from protected groups to participate in activities where their participation is disproportionately low;’
  • Taking steps to eliminate harassment related to each protected characteristic; and
  • Promoting positive attitudes towards each protected characteristic, for example attitudes towards women, disabled people, people with a leaning difficulty such as dyslexia, autism; people of certain age groups or religious  beliefs, transsexual people, lesbian, gay or bisexual people, or ethnic minority groups. 

EDLounge Ltd. values everyone as an individual and celebrates diversity by encouraging people to be successful as themselves. 

This policy fully embraces past and recent legislation including the Equality Act 2010.   

3.         POLICY STATEMENTS 

EDLounge Ltd. will work to ensure that: 

  • Equality of opportunity is embedded in all policies, practices, decision-making and evaluation processes
  • Equality and diversity objectives are in place, published and monitored annually
  • Impact assessments are completed in respect of all policies and procedures
  • A visibly diverse environment is created which values difference and raises aspiration
  • Flexible opportunities are offered which meet learning needs and enable all learners to realise their potential
  • All staff are clear about standards and strategies to meet diverse learner needs, including learners with a learning difference, and are equipped to respond effectively
  • The fullest participation of all learners and staff is encouraged in all areas of EDLounge life
  • Comprehensive and imaginative feedback systems are developed to capture learner, staff and stakeholder perceptions of our performance and potential for improvement
  • Positive images of achievement from all sections of society are recognised and celebrated
  • No member of its community is unfairly disadvantaged because of their social or economic background
  • Job applications are welcomed from all sections of society and selection is made on the basis of specified skills and abilities.  Exceptions are only permitted in the event that there is a genuine occupational requirement
  • EDLounge Ltd. performance indicators are analysed in relation to equality and diversity impact measures, including recruitment, retention, achievement and success rates
  • EDLounge Ltd. self-assessment reports will analyse success data by ethnicity, gender, age and disability and develop strategies to close any achievement gaps which may be identified
  • Learner and staff surveys capture information on disability and/or learning difficulty such as dyslexia and autism and other protected characteristics 

3.1      Inclusiveness  

Inclusiveness is central to all the decisions and actions of EDLounge Ltd. staff. Staff are responsible for ensuring that they are aware of, and meet, their statutory responsibilities.  Learners are made aware of EDLounge Ltd.’s Equality and Diversity policy and are expected to behave in a way that is consistent with it. Individual breaches of the policy will be dealt with under the Student or Staff Disciplinary Procedures. EDLounge Ltd. will support individuals who have a justified complaint. The Whistle Blowing procedure may be used to raise an issue.

3.2      Commitment  

EDLounge Ltd. believes a commitment to equality is more effectively met when it is embedded across a range of activities. EDLounge Ltd. Training Company will also develop a clear set of equality and diversity measures to assess the impact of its policy and practice and benchmark Training Company performance against comparable external outcomes. 

The following sections of the policy support the overall aim above and the policy statements at 2 above and consider particular aspects of equality and diversity. 

4.        GENDER 

4.1      Position Statement 

EDLounge Ltd. will: 

  • Work actively to create a supportive and inclusive environment for all that enables full participation and success in learning and employment and will open up opportunities by actively combatting discrimination in every area of EDLounge life. EDLounge Ltd. will not allow sexual harassment or unfavourable treatment in any form
  • Recognise that people can be treated unfairly in terms of education, training and employment because of their gender. EDLounge Ltd. aims to eradicate gender discrimination and to actively promote gender equality
  • Recognise the importance of listening and responding to the needs of every individual involved in EDLounge life. We understand the potential damage that may be caused by gender discrimination and will take positive action against it 

4.2      Policy Statements 

EDLounge Ltd. will: 

  • Oppose sexism and be committed to taking positive action to identify and remove sexism from EDLounge life
  • Be proactive in the development of equality of opportunity for all throughout their EDLounge career
  • Monitor and review the participation and performance of male and female learners and redress inequalities
  • Positively encourage learners into non-traditional areas of study and work to minimise gender stereotyping
  • Not tolerate sexual harassment in any area of EDlounge Ltd. life. Any incidences of sexual harassment will be challenged vigorously through EDLounge disciplinary procedures
  • Not tolerate discrimination on the grounds of gender re-assignment or transgenderism
  • Ensure that policies, procedures and opportunities for professional development will be family-friendly to encourage full participation.

5.        SEXUAL ORIENTATION 

5.1      Position Statement 

EDLounge Ltd.: 

  • Is working actively to create a supportive and inclusive environment for all which is conducive to excellent practice in education, training and employment. EDLounge Ltd. actively combats discrimination, sexual  harassment or unfavourable treatment in every area of EDLounge life
  • Recognises that people can be treated unfairly in terms of education, training and employment because of their sexuality. EDLounge Ltd.’s aim is to eradicate discrimination on the grounds of sexuality and to promote equality of opportunity for all  

5.2      Policy Statements 

EDLounge Ltd. will:

  • Strongly oppose discrimination on the grounds of sexuality and is committed to taking positive action to identify and remove homophobia from EDLounge life
  • Encourage positive acceptance of people of all sexual orientations
  • Not tolerate homophobic harassment in any area of EDLounge life. Sexual harassment and discrimination will be challenged through EDLounge Ltd.'s disciplinary procedures
  • Ensure employment policies and procedures are family-friendly and will apply equally to households based on same-sex partnerships and to non-traditional parenting and care arrangements where appropriate legislation is in place   

6.        DISABILITY 

6.1      Position Statements 

EDLounge Ltd.: 

  • Aims to identify and eliminate attitudes, practices and procedures that discriminate against people on the grounds of disability and/or learning difficulty such as dyslexia, autism
  • Is committed to ensuring an inclusive, professional and friendly environment for learners, employees and members of the public with disabilities and/or learning difficulties such as dyslexia, autism 

6.2      Policy Statements 

EDLounge Ltd. fully accepts its responsibilities under the Disability Discrimination Act Part 4 (and the subsequent Equality Act 2010) and is committed to making any reasonable adjustments to its business activities that will promote equal access and opportunity for learners, employees and members of the public with disabilities and/or learning difficulties such as dyslexia and autism 

EDLounge Ltd. will ensure that all disabled learners and learners with learning difficulties such as dyslexia and autism have:

  • Appropriate opportunities to disclose disability and/or learning difficulty during their time as a learner at EDLounge Ltd.
  • Flexible and inclusive learning opportunities e.g. additional learning support for dyslexia
  • Student-centred learning support to enable access to EDLounge provision 
  • Information in relevant formats to ensure equal access
  • Information on support available including a Disability Statement to learners

EDLounge Ltd. will ensure that all potential and current employees with disabilities and/or learning difficulties such as dyslexia and autism have: 

  • Appropriate  opportunities to disclose disability and/or learning difficulty in their time as an employee 
  • Employment opportunities including promotion and are not refused due specifically to their disability and/or learning difficulty
  • Information in relevant formats to ensure equal access

EDLounge Ltd. will maintain strong links with external agencies to ensure the provision of appropriate and effective support for staff with disabilities and/or learning difficulties such as dyslexia and autism. 

EDLounge Ltd. is committed to: 

  • Ensuring that its services and facilities are open to the public
  • Equal and dignified treatment in the provision of those services and facilities
  • Continual improvement in all aspects of equal access in all areas of EDLounge provision
  • Maintaining strong links with external agencies to ensure the provision of appropriate and effective support for learners with disabilities and/or learning difficulties such as dyslexia and autism
  • Undertaking health and safety risk assessments to assess entry onto programmes where appropriate

   

7.        RELIGIOUS OBSERVANCE OR BELIEF 

7.1      Position Statement 

EDLounge Ltd. recognises the need to ensure compliance with the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations (and any subsequent amendments there to) under which it is unlawful to discriminate against workers because of religion or similar belief. 

For the purposes of treating all learners and employees equally on religious grounds, EDLounge Ltd. defines religion or belief as being any named religion, religious belief or similar philosophical belief.  It will therefore be for the Employment Tribunals and other Courts to decide whether particular circumstances are covered by the regulations.

7.2      Policy Statement 

EDLounge Ltd. will: 

  • Not discriminate directly against anyone. That is, to treat them less favourably than others because of their religion or belief
  • Not discriminate indirectly against anyone. That is to apply a criterion, provision or practice which disadvantages people of a particular religion or belief unless it can be objectively justified
  • Not subject anyone to harassment. Harassment is unwanted conduct that violates a person’s dignity or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment having regard to all the circumstances and the perception of the victim.
  • Not victimise anyone because they have made, or intend to make a complaint, or allegation, or have given or intend to give evidence in relation to a complaint of discrimination on the grounds of religion or belief

  

8.        RACE AND ETHNICITY 

8.1      Position Statement 

EDLounge: 

  • is committed to promoting equality of opportunity and good race relations between persons of different groups and avoiding racial discrimination, whether direct or indirect
  • recognises its responsibilities under the Race Relations Act 1976, the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 and the Equality Act 2010  

8.2      Policy Statements 

EDLounge Ltd. actively supports and welcomes diversity amongst its learners, staff and visitors, recognising the particular contributions to the achievement of its mission that can be made by individuals from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences. 

EDLounge Ltd. is committed to: 

  • Actively tackling racial discrimination, and promoting racial equality and good race relations
  • Encouraging, supporting and helping all learners and staff to reach their potential
  • Assessing the effects of the policy on staff and learners from different racial groups
  • Monitoring, by racial group, the progress of learners, and the recruitment and career development of staff

 

  9.        AGE 

9.1      Position Statement 

EDLounge Ltd.: 

  • Recognises that people can be discriminated against and stereotyped because of their age. This is evident in the range of beliefs, assumptions and attitudes which underpin judgements about an individual’s potential, behaviour and preferences
  • Believes that prejudice and discrimination on the grounds of age (‘ageism’) have no place in an educational establishment. There should be no employment discrimination on the grounds of age, subject to normal arrangements for employees to retire. EDLounge Ltd. will not discriminate against learners on the grounds of age, except where age is a mandatory criteria for entry to a course
  • Recognises the value of Life Long Learning and that an individual’s life experiences add to their role as a member of the EDLounge community and their personal learning experience 

9.2      Policy Statements 

EDLounge Ltd. will: 

  • Actively promote and actively support educational achievement for people of all ages
  • Work to remove arbitrary age barriers to educational success and personal achievement 
  • Promote up-skilling and re-training programmes for those in paid employment or who wish to re-enter training
  • Develop teaching, learning and support strategies to meet the particular needs of learners from different age groups
  • Promote positive images of the achievement of people of all ages to recognise and celebrate knowledge and experience 
  • Welcome job applications from all age groups and select on the basis of specified skills and abilities

10.      GENDER REASSIGNMENT 

The definition has changed so that people no longer have to be under medical supervision to be protected by the law.  Gender reassignment continues to cover those who intend to live permanently in a gender other than the one assigned at birth. References to transsexual people under the act covers employees who are proposing to undergo, are undergoing, or have undergone a process (or part of a process) to reassign their sex by changing physiological or other attributes of sex, i.e. gender reassignment.   

11.      MARRIAGE AND CIVIL PARTNERSHIPS 

Under the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act, 2013 the marriage of same-sex couples is lawful and must be treated the same as married heterosexual couples. The Equality Act  2010 does not define marriage as a protected characteristic in the context of education, however, marriage is a protected characteristic in employment practices.

12.      PREGNANCY AND MATERNITY 

This section defines what it means to discriminate because of a woman’s pregnancy or maternity, as distinct from her gender. It protects a woman from discrimination because of her current or a previous pregnancy.  It also protects her from maternity discrimination, which includes treating her unfavourably because she is breast-feeding, for 26 weeks after giving birth and provides that pregnancy or maternity discrimination as defined cannot be treated as sex discrimination.   

13.      MONITORING EQUALITY (Equality Analysis) 

EDLounge Ltd. conducts comprehensive and effective monitoring of all aspects of staff and the student body.   

Monitoring will be undertaken in accordance with best practice recommendations, particularly from bodies such as the Equality and Human Rights Commission and with regard to GDPR. The outcomes of such monitoring will be reported on to the Executive Management Team.

Equality Analysis (formerly Equality Impact Assessment) of a current or proposed policy is undertaken to see whether it has or will have a different impact on individuals or groups of individuals based on the protected characteristics in the Equality Act. Policies are monitored to determine their level of impact on EDLounge staff, learners and the local community, and policies that affect core functions of EDLounge Ltd. have all been impact-assessed. 

If any constraints or inequalities are identified, action will be taken.  Amendments will be made if the policy is deemed to have or potentially have an adverse effect on any group of individuals. 

13.1    Employment 

EDLounge Ltd. is committed to the collection of statistics, the analysis and presentation of data as well as monitoring on an ongoing basis as employment policy and practices change. 

EDLounge Ltd. will use the two main forms of monitoring, i.e. of the composition of the existing workforce and the recruitment and selection process, looking at the workforce with reference to protected characteristics. 

EDLounge Ltd. will also categorise staff according to grade; contract type, i.e. whether full-time or part-time, permanent or temporary; length of time in post; place of work and salary. Records will also be kept of training, performance reviews, promotions, regradings and discretionary pay awards. 

After the employment relationship has ended, EDLounge Ltd. may retain statistics: data about the composition of the workforce, including appraisal and promotion records, for the purpose of carrying out equality and diversity monitoring, and may also look at reasons for resignation and resignation rates.

13.2    Learners 

EDLounge Ltd. will monitor all learners and potential learners in order to inform the setting of targets and the measurement of progress in achieving them. For example, in: 

applications (success and failure rates for admission to programmes), retention rates, achievement rates, work placements (including success rates, satisfaction levels, job offers), learning, progression, disciplinary action, complaints by students or their sponsors and student satisfaction surveys.   

14.      MEETING OUR DUTIES 

EDLounge Ltd. will seek to ensure, through its core values, that it meets its general and specific duties under the Equality Act 2010. This will be achieved by ensuring that: 

  • Staff, learners and their sponsors (including work placement providers) are aware of our Equality Policy and the action needed for its implementation 
  • Staff, learners and their sponsors (including work placement providers) are aware of the value placed upon equality and that action will be taken in the event of any breach of the policy 
  • Staff have access to comprehensive information, which assists them to plan, implement and monitor actions to carry out the responsibilities under the policy 

EDLounge Ltd. will also ensure that publicity materials present appropriate and positive messages about equality and diversity.   

Created: Jan 2018
Last reviewed: Jan 2019
Next review: Jan 2020


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