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NHS employers asked to be LGBT Champions

14 October 2005 - 9:10am

Chief Executives in the NHS have been encouraged to have their organisations to join the “Diversity Champions” in the established Stonewall campaign promoting equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender staff.

The Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations made sexual orientation discrimination in the workplace unlawful.  In a letter to Chief Executives, Department of Health Equality & Human Rights head Surinder Sharma said “Becoming a Stonewall Diversity Champion will help [NHS organisations] meet the challenges ahead, attract the best recruits, motivate and retain their workforce, improve service user experience and to ensure that your organisation complies with the new law.”

Investing in diversity is a win/win situation for staff and employers so it is hoped that many trusts will follow the Department of Health’s example and become members of the programme.

Designed to promote understanding and good practice around issues of sexual orientation in the workplace, Diversity Champions was launched by Stonewall in 2001.  The programme now has over 110 members, including The Department of Health, Manchester City Council, St Mungos, Goldman Sachs, the Metropolitan Police and IBM. 

Diversity Champions members enjoy 10 key benefits:

·  Networking opportunities with senior staff in public and private sector organisations, plus Government and policy makers

·  Good practice seminars and events delivering key information on topical issues

·  Dedicated Programme Manager and other staff

·  Access to the latest thinking and knowledge and advice on specific organisational initiatives

·  Influence over policy development in the public and private sectors

·  Regular e-bulletins from Stonewall's chief executive

·  Stonewall logo for internal and external communications

·  Research opportunities

·  Free entry in Stonewall's Recruitment guide

·  Access to benchmarking services to improve organisational performance

Stonewall would be delighted to meet trust staff to talk about Diversity Champions.  You can find out more about the programme at www.stonewall.org.uk/workplace or by phoning 020 7881 9262. 

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