Equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) goes to the heart of our organisation and the heart of what we are trying to achieve with true partnership for all patients. It is not simply the right thing to do, but it is a practical one. As an organisation that wants to speak for all patients, it is our responsibility to understand the experiences of all patients, to represent all and ensure they are all included and treated equally.

What do we mean by EDI?

Equality is about ensuring fairness, where individuals or groups of people are not treated less favourably, and where everyone can participate and have the same opportunity to fulfil their potential.

Diversity is about recognising the value of difference. It means considering and appreciating all the unique characteristics that make people who they are. This includes, but not limited to, national origins, language, race, colour, disability, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, socioeconomic status, and family structure. Diversity also encompasses diversity of thought and life experiences.

Inclusion is about creating and maintaining a culture where people feel welcomed and valued for who they are as an individual or group and feel empowered to contribute.

We are committed to being a diverse and inclusive organisation, tackling inequality in all its forms. Our purpose is to ensure that everyone can access and benefit from the health and care they need to live well, by ensuring that services are designed and delivered through equal partnership with patients.

The pandemic has served as a stark reminder of existing inequalities, as the differences in outcomes from coronavirus for Black, Asian, and other ethnic minority communities, those with physical and learning disabilities, those in care homes and those from more socially deprived backgrounds were laid bare. We already know that inequalities relating to ethnicity and deprivation also lead to some of the poorest outcomes for patients, meaning unfair differences in care and treatment. If we are to play our part in reducing inequalities, we must first look at ourselves.

Late in 2021 trustees and the leadership team came together for a morning to discuss equality, diversity and inclusion within the Patients Association supported by the Diversity Trust.

As a result of this work, we have reviewed our equality, diversity and inclusion objectives and these will be monitored and reviewed on a yearly basis by our Board of Trustees.

8th June 2022