Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy

POLICY STATEMENT

  • The IVR Group values equality and diversity, we work within and actively consider the Equality Act 2010 in our everyday activities, roles and functions.
  • We promote a work environment where we treat all employees and all individuals that we meet through our business activities, fairly, equally, with dignity and with respect regardless of their differences or our personal bias.
  • We expect the same respect from our employees and from others that we meet through our business activities, roles and functions.
  • We value differences (diversity) and recognise that different experiences can bring valuable insights into the workplace and industry as a whole.
  • We will pro-actively challenge unlawful discrimination and unfair treatment should it arise whether in the IVR Group workplace or within the wider business activities, roles and functions we perform.
  • We are committed to offer equal opportunities to employees and potential employees during recruitment and throughout employment with our organisation, including training, development and promotional opportunities.
  • The IVR Group expects the same commitment to the spirit of this policy from all instructors, suppliers and partners.

POLICY PURPOSE

  • To provide equality, fairness and respect for all employees and individuals we meet in our wider business role/function.
  • To not unlawfully discriminate because of the Equality Act 2010 protected characteristics of:
    • age
    • disability
    • gender reassignment
    • marriage and civil partnership
    • pregnancy and maternity
    • race (including colour, nationality, and ethnic or national origin)
    • religion or belief
    • sex
    • sexual orientation
  • As an employer to oppose and avoid all forms of unlawful discrimination and equal opportunity for all staff.

POLICY PRINCIPLES

  • The Policy is a document for employees and individuals we meet in our wider business role/function to use.
  • The Policy has the full commitment of the IVR Council of Management.
  • The Policy will be reviewed regularly and will be a process of on-going development through feedback, changing circumstances and legislation.
  • The same commitment to the spirit of this policy is expected from all instructors, suppliers and partners.

A FAIR WORKING ENVIRONMENT

  • Every employee and every individual that we meet through our business activities or function, is entitled to a working environment that promotes dignity, respect, fairness and equality.  The IVR Group will not tolerate acts of bullying, harassment, victimisation, unlawful or unfair discrimination, whether against an employee or an individual that we meet through our business activities, because of the protected characteristics of:
    • age
    • disability
    • gender reassignment
    • marriage and civil partnership
    • pregnancy and maternity
    • race
    • religion or belief
    • sex
    • sexual orientation

IMPLEMENTATION OF THE POLICY - COMMITMENT

The IVR Group commits to:

  • Encourage equality, diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
  • Continually work towards creating a working environment free of bullying, harassment, victimisation and unlawful discrimination.  Promoting dignity, fairness and respect for all, regardless of personal bias.  Where individual differences and the contributions of all staff are recognised and valued.
  • Take seriously complaints of bullying, harassment, victimisation and unlawful discrimination by employees and others in the course of the organisation’s work activities.
  • Ensure all staff understand they, as well as their employer, can be held liable for acts of bullying, harassment, victimisation and unlawful discrimination, in the course of their employment, against fellow employees, or individuals that they meet through our business activities.
  • Make decisions concerning employees and recruitment of staff based on merit, ability and aptitude (apart from in any necessary and limited exemptions and exceptions allowed under the Equality Act).
  • Make opportunities for training, development and progress available to all employees, who will be helped and encouraged to develop their full potential, so their talents and resources can be fully utilised to maximise the efficiency of the organisation.
  • Make every effort to stay up to date with relevant legislation, our obligations and good practice guidance, updating our policies as necessary.
  • Monitor the make-up of the workforce regarding information such as age, ethnic background, sexual orientation and disability in encouraging equality and diversity, and in meeting the aims and commitments set out in the equality policy.  Take action to address issues.

IMPLEMENTATION OF THE POLICY - DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION

  • We will ensure diversity and inclusion issues are considered in all parts of the business, including training courses and are part of our processes.
  • Make every effort to stay up to date with relevant legislation, our obligations and good practice guidance, updating our policies as necessary.
  • We will make ‘reasonable adjustments’ for employees throughout employment, including working hours.

IMPLEMENTATION OF THE POLICY - RECRUITMENT AND EMPLOYMENT

  • We will make decisions concerning employees and recruitment of staff based on merit, ability and aptitude (apart from in any necessary and limited exemptions and exceptions allowed under the Equality Act).
  • We will actively consider staff requests to work flexibly, whether part time or some other working arrangement, for whatever reason, so long as it is possible to agree this/consistent with the needs of the organisation.
  • We will value the diversity and contribution that disabled people may bring and will make reasonable adjustments (as defined by the Disability Discrimination Act) to facilitate this.
  • We will make ‘reasonable adjustments’ for employees throughout employment, including on the basis of their religion or beliefs. 

IMPLEMENTATION OF THE POLICY - POLICY BREACHES

  • Such acts will be dealt with as misconduct under the IVR Group’s grievance and/or disciplinary procedures, and any appropriate action will be taken. Particularly serious complaints could amount to gross misconduct and lead to dismissal without notice, or a refusal to continue to partner with or refusal to continue to do business with the perpetrator without notice.
  • Acts of discrimination prohibited by the policy could additionally amount to both legal action and/or a criminal matter. 
  • Sexual harassment may amount to both a matter dealt with under the IVR Group’s disciplinary procedures and a criminal matter, such as in sexual assault allegations.
  • The “Policy Statement” above shall be displayed in our offices, visible to all staff and visitors. Employees and management are to be given a copy of the whole policy upon appointment and whenever the policy is modified.
  • False allegations of a breach of this policy which are found to have been made in bad faith will be dealt with under the IVR Discipline Policy.

YOUR RIGHT TO COMPLAIN

The organisation will encourage issues of misunderstanding to be openly discussed and resolved, however:

  • Every employee and every individual that we meet through our business activities or function, has the right to give feedback or raise complaints if they feel they have been unfairly treated under this policy.
  • Complaints under this policy should initially be raised through theh IVR office/general manager, unless it involves the office/general manager whereby the complaint can be made to the IVR chairman.  All complaints should be made in writing.
  • Appeals regarding how a complaint has been handled should be sent to the IVR Council of Management.  This can be sent via email to the office/general manager, or via post in an envelope to the chairman of the Council of Management marked 'Private and Confidential'.
  • The IVR Group will seek to give appropriate support and protect individuals from any form of victimisation or of being treated less favourably as a result from them taking action or making a complaint using this policy as the basis for that complaint.
  • False allegations of a breach of this policy which are found to have been made in bad faith will be dealt with under the IVR Group’s disciplinary policy.

COMMUNICATION AND TRAINING

  • This policy will shared via the IVR website.
  • Equality, diversity and inclusion will be included in any induction programmes so that all new employees know about IVR Group values and policies.
  • Instructors will be made aware of this policy, through their training provider agreement.
  • From time to time specific awareness training may be considered, employees, instructors and managers may be required to attend.
  • A training provider is expected to have their own equality and diversity policies, which may be inspected at a training provider’s assessment.

REVIEW AND MONITORING

This policy is subject to review and improvement. It will be reviewed by the Council of Management.  Any suggestions for changes should be made, in the first instance, to the office/general manager.

The IVR Group may ask clients using the services or job applicants for information about their ethnic origin, disability, marital status, age or other personal information but will only do this for a specific defined purpose such as collecting statistical data, for research or for our own monitoring to evaluate this policy’s impact.