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The Social Care Workforce Race Equality Standard (SC-WRES) was developed by Skills for Care, as a tool to measure improvements in the workforce with respect to the experiences of black & minority ethnic staff.  

The challenge for organisations is to ensure Black & minority ethnic staff are treated fairly. This includes fair access to opportunities to develop and progress into senior leadership roles, and to be a part of an inclusive workplace that makes all staff feel equally valued.

There's evidence that the depth of talent from minority ethnic people in the workplace goes unrecognised and that these staff continue to face discrimination and racism at work. Research shows that organisations whose leadership reflects the diversity of their communities and their workforce, achieve better outcomes for everyone. Diverse leaders and teams are more likely to be innovative, and more effective. 

Organisations who complete the SC-WRES can then transparently demonstrate measurable change year-on-year based on how well they're doing. This may be in terms of demonstrating good practice or highlighting areas where staff from Black and minoritised ethnicities have different experiences and outcomes. These are addressed by an action plan that organisations develop and work towards.

 

History of the Workforce Race Equality Standard

In 2014, The NHS Equality and Diversity Council took action to ensure employees from black and minority ethnic backgrounds have equal access to career opportunities and receive fair treatment in the workplace. This resulted in the development of the NHS WRES.

NHS studies shows that a motivated, included and valued workforce, helps deliver high quality patient care, increased patient satisfaction and better patient safety.

Skills for Care commissioned a scoping review on developing a WRES for Social Care, funded with support from the NHS.

In 2018, Skills for Care held a roundtable event, and invited colleagues from across the sector to talk to about race equality. The subsequent report written by Roger Kline and Karen Linde, provided a base line on the state of progress on race equality in the social care sector. The report highlighted the need to improve understanding across the sector on race equality issues. Similarly with the NHS, they identified a need to take focused action to address the experiences of Black and ethnically minoritised workers.

 

Phase 1

The initial phase of the Social Care Workforce Race Equality Standard (SC-WRES) was launched by a programme group including the Chief Social Worker for Adults, Skills for Care and the Department for Education. The SC-WRES is a process that organisations can use to address, evidence and make progress in race equality. The SC-WRES Standard comprises 9 measurable metrics to examine disparities in race equalities.

After consultation with key stakeholders, phase 1 of the SC-WRES was tested with 18 local authority sites across England. The local authorities collected data, evaluating their internal policies, process, systems and data against the SC-WRES Metrics. The test sites are also encouraged to engage directly with their workers; to promote anti-racist and anti-discriminatory practice, create safe spaces and will also examine the accuracy of the data that they collect.

The data collected by each test site covers:

  • percentage of staff from ethnic minorities across pay bands compared with the percentage of staff in the rest of the workforce

  • comparative rate of from ethnic minorities being appointed from shortlisting

  • comparative rate of staff from ethnic minorities entering a formal disciplinary process

  • comparative rate of staff from ethnic minorities entering a fitness to practice process

  • comparative rate of staff from ethnic minorities accessing funded non-mandatory CPD

  • percentage of staff from ethnic minorities experiencing harassment, bullying or abuse from service users, relatives or the public in last 12 months

  • percentage of staff from ethnic minorities experiencing harassment, bullying or abuse in the last 12 months from managers, colleagues or senior staff

  • comparative rate of employees from ethnic minorities leaving the organisation during the last year 

  • composition of the organisations’ senior management.

The individual local authority data return was submitted to Skills for Care and a report was generated which compiled data from across the 18 test sites, identifying themes and trends. Organisations will be able to demonstrate progress against the nine metrics. There are further measurements planned which will indicate whether action plans are achieving better race equality for staff.

The SC-WRES is committed to sharing the findings of all organisations who have committed to it so that good practice is disseminated. 

 

Resources and further information

Take a look how Skills for Care is supporting the drive towards a more diverse future.

Organisations who complete the SC-WRES can then transparently demonstrate measurable change year-on-year based on how well they're doing. This may be in terms of demonstrating good practice or highlighting areas where staff from Black and minoritised ethnicities have different experiences and outcomes. These are addressed by an action plan that organisations develop and work towards.

If you'd like to know more about the SC-WRES then contact us at info@skillsforcare.org.uk