PROMOTE EQUALITY AND INCLUSION IN HEALTH, SOCIAL CARE OR CHILDREN’S AND YOUNG PEOPLE’S SETTINGS
Understand the importance of diversity, equality and inclusion
Explain what is meant by diversity; equality; inclusion
Diversity can be defined in many different ways. What does it mean to us? Diversity is a commitment to recognizing and appreciating the variety of characteristics that make individuals unique in an atmosphere that promotes and celebrates individual and collective achievement. Examples of these characteristics are: age; cognitive style; culture; disability (mental, learning, physical); economic background; education; ethnicity; gender identity; geographic background; language(s) spoken; marital/partnered status; physical appearance; political affiliation; race; religious beliefs; sexual orientation.
Equality is ensuring individuals or groups of individuals are treated fairly and equally and no less favourably, specific to their needs, including areas of race, gender, disability, religion or belief, sexual orientation and age.
Inclusion at its simplest is ‘the state of being included’ but it is a bit more complicated than that… It is used by disability rights activists to promote the idea that all people should be freely and openly accommodated without restrictions or limitations of any kind.
Describe the potential effects of discrimination
Physical effects: headaches, poor appetite, a change in eating habits, sleeplessness, loss/gain of weight, deterioration of health, bruises, ulcers, lack of personal hygiene and lack of energy. Emotional effects: low self-esteem, lack of confidence, feeling unwanted, insecurity, becoming withdrawn, depression/stress, anxiety, sudden change in behaviour, lack of co-operation and learned helplessness. Social effects: isolation, lack of friends, becoming withdrawn, unrecognized as an individual, feel like a stranger and inability to build relationships. the intellectual effects: restricted access to education, poor performance in examinations, lack of achievements, poor job prospects, lack of skills, self-fulfilling prophecy, loss of motivation, lack of interest in anything and absence from work.
Explain how inclusive practice promotes equality and supports diversity
Inclusive practice is about the attitudes, approaches and strategies taken to ensure that people are not excluded or isolated. It means supporting diversity by accepting and welcoming people’s differences, and promoting equality by ensuring equal opportunities for all. Inclusive practice is best practice. Health and social care workers demonstrate inclusive practice by working in ways that recognise, respect, value and make the most of all aspects of diversity. Having a sound awareness of and responding sensitively to an individual’s diverse needs supports them in developing a sense of belonging, well-being and confidence in their identity and abilities. And it helps them to achieve their potential and take their rightful place in society. In addition, inclusive practice involves having an understanding of the disastrous impact that discrimination, inequality and social exclusion can have on an individual’s physical and mental health. Having such an understanding ensures appropriate, personalised care and support, thereby enabling an individual to develop self-respect and maintain a valued role in society. Because people who fail to support diversity or promote equality are usually entirely unaware of their attitudes and the impact of their behaviour, inclusive practice involves reflecting on and challenging one’s own prejudices, behaviours and work practices. It also involves challenging those of colleagues and other service providers, with a view to adapting ways of thinking and working and to changing services to build on good practice and to better support diversity and promote equality.
Be able to work in an inclusive way