Building Equality and Diversity in the National Offender Management Service

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2007 Local Government Service Group Conference
23 February 2007

This conference notes that the probation service in England and Wales has a tradition of working proactively on equality issues and well established equality networks for the various diversity strands.

Conference expresses concern that this is not being effectively carried forward in the National Offender Management Service (NOMS), particularly in the context of the mixed economy for probation and contestability.

Conference calls for clarity on future arrangements:

1on consultation;

2on the involvement of trade unions in general and in particular in developing and reviewing HR policies;

3on how NOMS will deliver equality through its new HQ structure; and

4on how the equality and diversity strategy will be resourced overall and in each area.

Conference believes there should be a wide ranging review of NOMS’s national equality and diversity policy, in consultation with the unions, including

ahow equalities will be managed and resourced by NOMS, as an employer and as a service provider

bthe establishment of equality impact assessments across all equality grounds (age, gender, including gender identity, disability, sexual orientation, race and religion/belief) for NOMS’s HR policies

cproper resourcing of staff diversity groups

dcontract compliance to ensure private contractors are held to account on equality.

Conference calls on the Local Government Service Group Executive, working with the National Probation Committee, to push NOMS to meet its statutory duties to promote equality, as an absolute minimum, involving the trade unions as full stake holders in the development of NOMS policy on equality and diversity, as an employer and service provider, including contract compliance.