Derby logo

Derby City Children's Social Care Procedures

1.1.3 Equality and Diversity Policy


This chapter explains how Derby City Council promote equality and diversity - both as an employer and in the delivery of services.


Please read in conjunction with Equality, Dignity and Respect Policy (October 2018) (intranet access is required) and the Diversity and Heritage Pledges.


This chapter was updated in September 2022.


  1. Introduction
  2. Equality, Dignity and Respect Policy
  3. Equality and Diversity Training
  4. Promoting Diversity and Positive Identity and Potential
  5. Race, Ethnic Origin and Nationality, including Citizenship
  6. Religious Beliefs
  7. Gender, Gender Identity and Transgender
  8. Sexual Orientation
  9. Disability
  10. Age
  11. Providing Early Help and Children's Social Care

1. Introduction

This policy should always be read in conjunction with our Heritage Pledges, which make a commitment that:

  1. We will listen to, and learn from our young people;
  2. We will take the time to talk with our young people and their families to understand their culture and identity, and ensure the development of our workforce to meet these needs;
  3. We will value young people and understand their uniqueness, and ensure that any care you receive reflects this.

This document summarises the local authority's commitment to provide inclusive and equitableservices to a diverse range of children and young people to meet their individual needs. The local authority's will not discriminate against any persons (including staff, potential staff, children and young people or foster carers) on the basis of a protected characteristic under the Equality Act 2010:

  • Age;
  • Disability;
  • Gender reassignment.
  • Marriage and civil partnership;
  • Pregnancy and maternity.
  • Race;
  • Religion or belief;
  • Sex;
  • Sexual orientation.

2. Equality, Dignity and Respect Policy

Derby City Council is genuinely committed to promoting and providing equality and diversity in all our areas of responsibility, both as a major employer and leader in the city and also as a key service deliverer. We believe in treating everyone fairly and with respect. We see the diversity of our city as a real strength. We want to build strong communities with a sense of togetherness and we want to tackle disadvantage. We want everyone to be able to reach their full potential and to benefit from the strength of our city.

We will challenge unfair treatment, prejudice, discrimination, harassment, victimisation and bullying; including discrimination by association and perception.

In service delivery we will follow and adhere to the key standards, including equality monitoring, laid out in the Equality, Dignity and Respect Policy (October 2018) (intranet access is required).

3. Equality and Diversity Training

All staff are required to take a mandatory e-learning course on equality, dignity and respect. In addition, Workforce Learning and Development for CSC provide a range of courses which support workers to think about diversity, difference and how to approach working with these individuals. These can be found here Workforce Learning and Development - WFLD (intranet access is required).

4. Promoting Diversity and Positive Identity and Potential

Ethnic origin, linguistic background, faith or religion and culture are of importance to the developing identity of all children and young people and young people. This includes the moral values, behaviour norms, lifestyle, social and artistic pursuits espoused by a family and taught to their children and young people. In Derby we value the strengths of individuals, families and communities; respecting their views and wishes and promoting equal opportunities.

We will always promote diversity, positive identity and potential:

  • We encourage children and young people to develop respect for themselves and for others;
  • All children are given the opportunity to be cared for and educated in order to develop their full potential;
  • We deliver services that recognise and build on the strengths of children and young people and young people from all cultures, religions, gender, age, sexual orientation, ability and backgrounds; in ways that meet their needs and help them to achieve their full potential;
  • Resources used to develop work with children and young people and young people are chosen for their suitability, positive image and anti-oppressive nature;
  • Children and young people are offered opportunities to try out new experiences, which are not restricted by traditional gender options;
  • Staff and foster carers are expected to challenge attitudes, behaviour and language that are non-inclusive and discriminatory, in a positive way;
  • Children and young people are protected, and helped to keep themselves safe, from bullying, homophobic behaviour, racism, sexism, radicalisation and other forms of discrimination. Any discriminatory behaviours are challenged and help and support are given to children and young people about how to treat others with respect.

5. Race, Ethnic Origin and Nationality, including Citizenship

Derby is a diverse city, rich in culture where people get on well together. The profile of Derby is changing all the time with new communities arriving and we want everyone to feel welcome. In children and young people's social care, we will ensure that we:

  • Support our communities to have a sense of belonging to their neighbourhood and the city;
  • Support young people in the city by recognising their importance and role in the life of the city;
  • Challenge extremist activity of any sort;
  • Support those who are vulnerable and isolated in our city;
  • Try to address the impacts of migration.

We will work with focus groups and teams to ensure that our interventions remain appropriate and consistent with Derby's approach.

6. Religious Beliefs

We respect and value the religion and beliefs of our employees and our young people and families, including those people with no religion or belief. We will do our best to make sure that we avoid the dates of important festivals and events when we are planning meetings or appointments, and endeavour to ensure you can enjoy special days and events.

We feel it is really important that our services are able to meet the religious and cultural needs of the people who use them. So, it is essential that our employees who deliver these services are sensitive to the needs of people's faiths.

7. Gender, Gender Identity and Transgender

Children and young people, regardless of gender, should receive equal opportunities and encouragement to pursue their talents, interests and hobbies. Gender stereotypes of behaviour must not be imposed or condoned. Encouraging staff and carers to model behaviour to children and young people that demonstrates that there are gender variant roles and not specifically male, female and trans roles, is crucial.

8. Sexual Orientation

A number of young people to whom we offer services will be lesbian, bisexual or gay or unsure of their sexual identity. These young people should be able to expect acceptance, and sensitive understanding of their sexual identity from staff and carers, including those people who express uncertainty about their sexual orientation. Where requested by young people, this will be supported by making appropriate referrals to help with any fears, uncertainties or feelings, developing self-esteem and confidence to establish a lifestyle and relationships which are safe, legal and with which they should feel contented and comfortable.

Where gay, bisexual or lesbian parent applies for a service on behalf of their child or the family as a whole, his or her sexual identity will only be relevant to the assessment or service offered where it is apparent that it is presenting difficulties for that family.

Where a gay, bisexual or lesbian person or couple apply to foster carers, adopters or childminders, their application will be taken up in the same way as any other applicant. As with any other assessment, the quality of their relationship or their acceptance of their singleness will be considered during the assessment process in the context of the skills, experience and care they will or will not be able to offer to a child/ren. It is recognised that prejudice on the part of some children and parents may make their caring task more difficult but their positive strategies for coping with and dealing with prejudice will be considered as part of the assessment.

9. Disability

Under the Disability Discrimination Act, 1995the care setting must make reasonable adjustments to ensure disabled pupils are not placed at a substantial disadvantage to their peers. This may include providing additional staffing and accessible transport or ensuring the venue is appropriate to the needs of the child concerned. It is important that social care settings involve parents/carers, the child and, if appropriate, specialist support staff, as early as possible in the planning process.

We will make sure that we produce School Accessibility Strategies every three years and that the actions in them are reviewed regularly to make sure we do all we can to promote equality for disabled children and young people using our schools.

We will make sure our Access Guide includes information for young disabled people so they can enjoy activities with their non-disabled friends. We will also keep our Local Offer up to date with information about many inclusive mainstream activities.

10. Age

We are committed to tackling age discrimination, which can affect both young and older people in services and when applying for jobs. We will continue to work closely with our young people's forum as well as our own Derby Diversity Forum to make sure we provide appropriate services and opportunities for all ages.

Care leavers

Just like any parent, as corporate parents, we want the best for our young people and we know that our care leavers face particular challenges. We will do all we can to support these young people, offering equal opportunities in becoming adults, such as getting a home and a job and offering emotional support in what may be a difficult chapter in their life.

We recognise that care leavers face more difficulties and challenges than their peers and so may need extra emotional and financial support. We also accept that care leavers are a diverse group of young people in their own right and many will be protected under the Equality Act, 2010. We have a moral and legal duty to make sure that care leavers' individual equality needs are met.

11. Providing Early Help and Children's Social Care


Accurate and significant information must be taken at this stage in a variety of situations.

  • Nationality and ethnicity;
  • Languages spoken at home;
  • Religion and current cultural practice;
  • Sexual orientation;
  • Disability;
  • The child's Birth and extended family, their ethnic and cultural origins, experience of racism and the role of religion in their lives;
  • The child's view of his/her own identity and any identity confusion, experience of racism and quality of contact with culture/community;
  • Recording of names is important. Different cultures use different structures for names.


An assessment and planning process involves gathering sufficient information to enable a judgement to be made about those aspects of the child's health, welfare or development that requires some help and what services, if any the (local authority) should provide. Assessments of the child/young person's specific needs are carried out with an aim to support and develop each child to reach their full potential

Diversity and identity must be considered in order to make accurate judgements about a child's needs. Practitioners should raise the subject of diversity and identity in a manner which is appropriate, acceptable and fair. The culture must be one where families are valued equally and no form of prejudice towards adults or children and young people is tolerated. For example, the need to enquire about heritage may be mistakenly seen as necessary only when working with children and young people and families from a black and minority background and be seen as discrimination.

It is important not only to recognise difference but to appreciate the positive aspects of difference. A useful exercise is to find out as much information as possible about a minority ethnic culture, for example the role of extended families, and then list some of the possible advantages. Customs and practices which a practitioner personally might find restrictive can be a source of strength and fulfilment to individuals brought up in a different culture.

Genograms (or cultural grams) and ecomaps will be completed in all cases, robustly considered and evidenced within assessments, plans and direct work.

Child abuse happens in all cultures and all children and young people have a right to be protected. Cultural differences must not be used as a reason for non-intervention. Workers should be sensitive to the many differing factors which may need to be taken into consideration, depending on the child's diversity or identity. If Practitioners are not sure, they should seek further guidance from their managers.


The plan for a child should address both immediate and longer term needs; it must take account of all information available on diversity and identity before finalising outcomes and actions. For instance:

  • Has the child been able to discover and express views about his or her ethnicity or cultural background?
  • Is their evidence of VoC tools being used consistently?
  • Is the child in touch with his or her community or cultural or ethnic heritage? If not, what plans are there to keep the child in touch?
  • Is the child helped to develop a sense of belonging to his own culture?
  • Have staff or carers received relevant help and guidance?
  • Should outside organisations and individuals be involved in planning for the child's future?
  • Have EHCPs been referenced and robustly considered within the plan; synchronising where possible to avoid duplication for the family and young person?

These issues should be considered each time the plan is reviewed.