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Our commitment to equality

West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust is committed to ensuring equality, diversity, inclusion and human rights are central to the way we deliver healthcare services to our patients and how we support our staff.

We are proud to be a significant employer in Hertfordshire; our sites across the county bring diversity to our workforce representing a broad spectrum of cultures, nationalities, and backgrounds. Our catchment areas present us with unique challenges and opportunities.

Our aim is to eliminate health inequalities and promote equal access to appropriate and quality services.

Legislation

View the Equality Act

The majority of the Equality Act provisions came into force in October 2010.

The Equality Act is a key part of the legal framework that underpins the way the NHS provides its services to patients and supports its staff. The Equality Act outlaws discrimination against patients or staff with the following protected characteristics:


Public Sector Equality Duty

Under the Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED), West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust is required to the meet the General Duty to provide people protection from discrimination and to actively promote equality for both patient and staff groups who fall within the nine protected groups.

The Trust complies with the law and aims to continue developing better practice to ensure that:

West Hertfordshire Hospital Trust is required to publish relevant, proportionate information showing compliance with the General Duty, and to set equality objectives. Publishing information about decision-making and the equality data which underpins those decisions opens the Trust up to informed public scrutiny. It offers the public the information they need to challenge the Trust and hold us to account for our performance on equality and help to focus the minds of decision-makers on giving proper consideration to equality issues. West Hertfordshire Hospital Trust published equality information as required under the PSED for the first time in January 2012. We will continue publish information to show our compliance with the General Duty, at least annually.


Gender pay gap reporting

West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust is required to carry out Gender Pay reporting under the Equality Act 2010 (Gender Pay Gap Information) Regulations 2017.

The gender pay gap between men and women working at West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust is currently 14.9%, against a current national mean of 17.4%.

The median hourly pay for women is 8% less than men. This compares favourably to the national median hourly pay where women earn 18.4% less than men.

As with many organisations, gender pay and bonus gaps arise because of the disproportionate number of men in senior positions. Within NHS Agenda for Change pay banding distribution, 5.7% of females are employed on bands 8a – 9, while 10.7% of male employees work within these bandings. These are the most senior – and therefore highest-paid – bands. Further work is to understand why are there more men in certain more senior roles than women, not the differences in pay when people are actually in these roles.

The report gives a more detailed breakdown of representation of the Trust’s gender demographics which shows:

Paul da Gama, Director of Human Resources at West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust said: “Equal treatment of men and women is not just the right thing to do – it is also good for our patients and staff. I am pleased that our gender equality pay statistics compare favourably to many benchmarks, including the Office for National Statistics. We are proud of our progress made over the years, but recognise that more can be done to ensure women and men are more equally represented at all levels, especially in more senior positions. To drive further change we will continue with a holistic approach to create an equal and inclusive workplace, change mind-sets and empower our people to reach their full potential.”

For more information on how the figures break down, see the full report:

View the report


NHS Equality Delivery System2 & Workforce Race Equality Standard

The EDS2 is an assessment tool designed to measure NHS equality performance with an aim to produce better outcomes for people using and working in the NHS and to gather equality evidence that demonstrates compliance with the Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) of the Equality Act 2010.

The implementation of EDS2 supports our strategic objective to promote equality throughout the planning, development and delivery of our services whilst appreciating and respecting the diversity of our local community and staff.

The EDS2 sets out four goals around equality, diversity and human rights. Within the four goals, there are 18 outcomes, against which we are required to assess and grade our equality performance. 9 of the 18 outcomes examine equality in service delivery and nine examine equality in workforce development.

Through the EDS2 we have thoroughly examined our equality information (2014 PSED report and 2015 Workforce Race Equality Standard) and our achievements during April 2014 to March 2015.

We have undertaken a process of engagement and review to complete the EDS2 grading process. 17 of the 18 EDS2 outcomes have been graded across two grading sessions, first for services on 6 May and Workforce on 20 August 2015.

Our latest Workforce Race Equality Standard report.

Previous Workforce Race Equality Standard reports and action plans