Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy

Change history

Version numberDate of releasePolicy ownerAuthorised by
4.030 July 2020Jo Lockenwitz, Senior HR Business PartnerBoard of Trustees

Policy statement

Central YMCA (‘the Charity’) is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion (‘EDI’) in all aspects of what we do, we consider it a key part of developing and maintaining a successful organisation. In recognition of this commitment, we are driven by our core value of Equity, breaking down barriers to ensure everyone can thrive.

The Charity is devoted to creating environments in which our employees, volunteers, Trustees, service users, learners including apprentices, partners, and visitors are treated fairly and with respect. We aim to create a culture that recognises, celebrates and values the differences between individuals. We firmly believe that a diverse and inclusive workforce is integral to attracting and meeting the needs of our diverse communities and creating inclusive spaces.

We seek to promote equality of opportunity in recruitment, employment, volunteering, governance and the provisions of programmes and services. We will not tolerate any form of discrimination, harassment or victimisation on any grounds, including those set out in the Equalities Act 2010: age, disability, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity, race, including ethnicity and national origin, religion or belief, gender and sexual orientation.

We pro-actively tackle discrimination or disadvantage, aiming to ensure that no individual or group is directly or indirectly discriminated against for any reason with regard to employment or accessing our programmes and services.

We reserve the right to modify this policy from time to time at our discretion and in line with legislation.


This policy applies to all current and potential employees, workers, self-employed contractors, volunteers, candidates, suppliers, partners, service users and visitors to Central YMCA.

Related Legislation 

Equality Act 2010

Related Policies, Procedures, and Templates

  • Grievance Policy
  • Disciplinary Policy
  • Our Values
  • Our Strategy
  • Safeguarding Policy


Board of Trustees
Overall responsibility for the policies and procedures that govern the work at Central YMCA.

Chief Executive
Overall responsibility for ensuring Central YMCA’s resources are used effectively and appropriately.

Policy Owner
Responsible for ensuring guidelines are in place and that policies and procedures reflect our charitable ethos and commitment to equality,  diversity and inclusion.

All Line Managers
Responsible for ensuring all employees are aware of and follow this policy.

All Employees and Volunteers
To follow policies and procedures, promoting best practice throughout the organisation.

Policy Review

Review of impact against the aims of policy:

This policy has been drafted for approval by Jo Lockenwitz and has been approved by the Board of Trustees and is deemed fit for purpose. All related procedures have been designed to match the contents of this policy.

The policy has been communicated successfully to employees and the policy has been made available on the Charity’s intranet.

Do there appear to be any patterns of equality related issues: No

If yes, please provide an Equalities Impact Assessment (if relevant): N/A

Reviewed by: Board of Trustees
Date: 06 January 2022

This policy will be reviewed on an annual basis by the Policy Owner, Human Resources, and signed off by the Board of Trustees if any changes are made.

Next review date: December 2022

Confirmation of policy approval:

Andrew Beal, Chair of the Board of Trustees 


1. Principles

We believe all individuals are of equal value, irrespective of their background.

Ensuring equal value and dignity for individual does not mean treating everybody in the same way. All individuals deserve to thrive and we are driven by our core value of Equity to provide everyone the same opportunity to succeed. This means sometimes we will need to undertake positive action to address inequalities in order to achieve equality of value and opportunity.

We recognise, respect and value difference. We believe that diversity is a strength which should be respected and celebrated by all.

We strive to remove barriers and disadvantages which people may face and focus on improving outcomes that enhance individuals and help them reach their potential.

We foster positive attitudes and relationships, promoting positive connections and mutual respect between colleagues, groups, and communities who differ from each other.

We aim to nurture a shared sense of inclusion and belonging. We want everyone who has a relationship with the Charity to feel a sense of belonging, that they are respected and are able to participate fully.

We take positive steps to tackle all forms of discrimination, harassment, victimisation, inequality, and unfairness.

We ensure that our facilities, programmes, and services are, as far as reasonably possible, welcoming, and accessible to all.

We make sure reasonable adjustments are made to support individuals and take particular account of people with disabilities to overcome barriers in the working, volunteering and governance environment, and whilst using our service.

2. Our Workforce

Central YMCA is an equal opportunities employer. Equal treatment applies to all aspects of employment including recruitment and selection, terms and conditions of work, promotions and career development, reward and recognition, learning and development, and redundancy and redeployment.

We value diversity and believe it takes all types of individuals to make a creative and innovative organisation. We look to attract, recruit, develop and retain talented people from all backgrounds at every level of the organisation, to draw on different perspectives and experiences that add value to the way we operate.

We believe that everyone, regardless of their differences, should have access to the same chances and we therefore actively promote equality of opportunity.

We promote inclusion and encourage different ways of thinking to challenge the status quo. We believe that our organisation is richer when everyone is treated with dignity and valued for their contribution and the unique skills and life experiences they bring.

We look to create a safe environment for employees to disclose disabilities (visible and non-visible) so that implementation of appropriate workplace adjustments can be tailored to individual needs.

We acknowledge that employees have commitments outside work (e.g. families and caring responsibilities) and we are committed to helping employees fulfil their potential at work whilst finding the right work/life balance

As part of our employee induction programme, we ensure individuals are aware of the Charity’s values including Equity and policies and procedures that support our EDI principles.

We are committed to ensuring our workforce is aware of equality, diversity and inclusion and provide training as part of the induction process and annually thereafter.

We provide regular communication regarding our approach EDI, outline our priorities and identify our actions.

We monitor the composition of the workforce regarding information such as age, gender identity and gender reassignment, race, sexual orientation, and disability. We prioritise these areas in the first instance and act accordingly in terms of positive action and reporting.

We are committed to consistently reviewing our policies and practices to ensure they uphold our EDI principles and take account of changes in the law.

3. Provision of Programmes and Services

Central YMCA is committed to ensuring our services are relevant and accessible to all, it is central to our mission: to create improved access to life-changing opportunities.

We aim to create environments based on the principles of openness, acceptance and participation, where individuals can feel free to be themselves.

All individuals who use our services and take part in our programmes will be treated equally, with courtesy and respect.

We value each individual for who they are and recognise differences, so individuals feel understood and accepted whatever their ability or background.

We believe we can become more inclusive by increasing our ability to relate to existing and potential customers, learners, and service-users and will seek to understand how we can better support those we work with and reach those who we do not.

We look to support underrepresented groups and build effective relationships within the wider communities where we operate through partnerships.

Central YMCA develops an enrichment curriculum to support and drive EDI across our 16-19 and apprenticeship provision. External agencies and resources complement internal modules to provide a rich learning environment. All resources are developed with the intent to accurately reflect society and provide role models for all areas of society.

We undertake Learner Voice surveys to collect information on learner satisfaction, safety and comfort within our settings. Such data help us ensure all learners feel able to participate fully in learning, and progress towards their goals. Emphasis is placed on citizenship and developing learners beyond their qualifications.

We assess the impact on EDI during our product development process and continuously look to improve our products to ensure learners with protected characteristics are not disadvantaged


4. Implementation, Monitoring and Review

This Policy will be supported by an EDI strategy and performance against this will be monitored by the Board of Trustees at least twice a year against agreed performance indicators.

We collect and analyse staff monitoring data and report on this annually to review our workforce and address any improvements that need to be made.

We collect and analyse candidate data to ensure the Charity is attracting and recruiting a diverse pool of candidates for employment, governance and volunteering opportunities.

We establish effective monitoring systems on the collection of data for our learners and service users that show where progress is being made, and where improvement is needed.

This Policy will be reviewed and updated annually or otherwise as required to reflect developments in equality legislation, data and best practice.  

This policy is shared on the Charity’s website and is built into the Charity’s Learner Management System so learners (including apprentices) and employers have access to this. Employers are notified of our key policies as part of the onboarding process and our expectations around EDI are shared.

5. Complaints Procedure

Central YMCA takes a zero-tolerance approach to discriminatory treatment. We aim to create an environment where individuals can:

  • make a complaint of discrimination, or harassment without victimisation;
  • feel confident and able to challenge discriminatory attitudes and behaviours.

All complaints relating to discrimination, harassment, victimisation or bullying will be taken seriously, dealt with promptly and investigated as appropriate. High-level data on such complaints will be monitored and reviewed by the Board and the overall effectiveness of the complaints process will be periodically evaluated.

Employees wishing to make a complaint regarding discrimination, harassment, victimisation or bullying can refer to the Charity’s Grievance Policy in conjunction with advice from our Human Resources team.

Service users, learners, volunteers, Trustees, partners or visitors who have witnessed or experienced unfair treatment or behaviour and wish to raise a complaint can do so by following the procedure in the Charity’s Complaints Policy.

6. Non-Compliance

Any breach of this policy by an employee will be investigated and dealt with through the Charity’s Disciplinary Procedure. Where an employee is found to have unfairly discriminated, harassed or victimised another individual they may be dismissed.

Breaches by self-employed contractors or volunteers will be investigated and may result in the use of services being terminated.

Breaches by a partner organisation will result in the third party’s employer being contacted and a formal complaint being made using that employer’s procedures.

Breaches by a service user or learner will be investigated and may result in participation on the service or programme being terminated.


7. Roles & Responsibilities

Everyone who works or volunteers with the Charity should be aware of our commitment to EDI and work to achieve a more diverse and inclusive culture.

7.1 Board of Trustees and Executive Team

Hold ultimate accountability for the EDI policy and ensure it is implemented throughout the organisation.

Encourage, nurture and promote a culture that supports EDI principles.

Encourage employees to participate in the creation of the right approach to foster an equal framework for all.

Integrate EDI considerations into business planning including strategy, operational plans and objectives throughout the organisation.

Adopt transparent practices and reporting frameworks which recognise, support and protect individuals who might be at risk of discrimination or disadvantage.

Ensure appropriate action is taken in any cases of unlawful discrimination, harassment or victimisation.

Ensure our marketing and internal and external communications reflect the spirit of this policy.

Monitor and review learner and service user data on a regular basis, suggest actions and publish the findings as appropriate.

7.2 Human Resources (HR)

Provide relevant training for all employees, workers, self-employed contractors, Trustees and volunteers on EDI matters.

Regularly review training to ensure this meets the particular needs of each stakeholder.

Encourage, nurture and promote a culture that supports EDI principles.

Devise employment, governance and volunteering policies, procedures and practices to ensure that all legislative requirements are met, and best practice adopted.

Ensure that recruitment, advertising, selection and appointment procedures, performance management processes, disciplinary and grievance processes are fair, transparent and consistently applied.

Treat all applications for flexible practices on a fair and equitable basis and provide reasonable and objective reasons when such requests must be refused.

Advise staff on legal compliance and ensure best practice in all matters relating to EDI.

Investigate all matters of alleged discrimination, harassment, victimisation and inappropriate behaviour promptly and thoroughly, recording all incidents and ensuring that the appropriate action is taken.

Monitor employment data on a regular basis, suggest actions and publish the findings as appropriate.

7.3 Line Managers

Support day-to-day implementation of the EDI Policy.

Encourage, nurture and promote a culture that supports equality, diversity and inclusion.

Seek to ensure that partner organisations we work with share similar values and promote similar EDI principles.

Ensure all employment decisions are implemented on a fair and equitable basis.

Ensure EDI is considered as part of all departmental planning processes.

Ensure diversity in recruitment at all times, seeking the broadest platform to attract a diverse candidate base.

7.4 Employees, Workers, Self-Employed Contractors and Volunteers

Ensure the principles of EDI are upheld.

Complete the mandatory EDI training ‘Equality in the Workplace’ annually.

Ensure the principles of this policy and our values are demonstrated through actions, and in any decisions taken as part of each employee’s role.

Treat colleagues, service users, partners and visitors with the same dignity and respect with which everybody should be treated.

Champion EDI principles and provide constructive challenge when behaviours do not promote or demonstrate them.

7.4 Service Users, Learners, Partners and Visitors

Ensure the principles of EDI contained within this Policy are upheld.

Champion EDI principles and provide constructive challenge when behaviours do not promote or them.

Some processes are for internal use only.