Economy Diversity, Inclusion and Anti-Oppression Policy

Version 2.0

Last revised on: 28 April 2021

Our Aims

  • Diversity of thought
  • Consensus of purpose
  • Challenging injustice
  • Dismantling structures of oppression

Our Values

1) Promoting accessibility

Our central aim is to highlight that the economy is for everyone. Therefore, our work should be able to be accessed by everyone with relative ease.

2) Valuing diversity

People have different needs, beliefs and values. Recognising the value of diversity will enable us to: build trust and confidence between communities, bring a richer mix of talents and ideas to support our work, create more efficient and effective decision making.

3) Promoting involvement and co-production

The best services are based on a close understanding of the needs they are trying to meet. We aim to co-create our work with the people who will be affected by it because they know their needs best. Traditionally, some groups are more likely than others to be consulted and involved. We will challenge ourselves to reach out and involve groups that are often left out, and to help them take a more active part in shaping the work that we do.

4) Promoting equality of opportunity

We recognise that some groups in the community find it harder to get jobs and they may also find it harder to make use of services, or find using those services more difficult. We believe that we should create a level playing field for everyone and this may mean treating people differently in order to help them have the same chance to work with us or access our services.

5) Promoting inclusive communities

We want our work to help build strong communities, in which: people feel they belong, their lives are appreciated and valued, people have similar life opportunities, and strong, positive relationships develop between people of different backgrounds.

6) Dismantling structures of oppression wherever we find them

We understand that there are intersecting systems of oppression that are built into the structures of our society which mean that minority groups are systemically disadvantaged – these include racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia and disablism. We aim to do whatever we can to dismantle these structures where we find them, both inside Economy and beyond.

Our Values in Practice

As a young organisation, Economy is developing at pace. In 2020 we first wrote down our approach to Diversity, Inclusion and Anti-Oppression and created an action plan. In April 2021 we have updated some of terms we are using to describe these issues, as a first step in formally reviewing the policy which will continue in a process that we will carry out during the next few months. This will help us assess whether the policy is helping us to achieve our aims. At any time, we welcome all conversations about how we can improve the way we work and live our values.

There will be moments when it will be particularly important to reflect and ask ourselves whether we are making progress. These include project planning, project review, recruitment, grant proposals, the Trustee away day and annual planning. 

Recruitment at Economy

When recruiting, Economy aims to:

  • Treat all candidates for roles at Economy fairly, without discrimination.
  • Acknowledge people’s experiences will be different due to systems of power and privilege, both past and present.
  • Appoint a diverse range of thinkers, doers and speakers in order to create an inclusive team of talented people carrying out Economy’s mission effectively and efficiently.

How do we do this?

In the way that we describe roles and job descriptions.

  • Role specifications that foreground aptitude over education qualifications or career experience.
  • Make it clear when formal qualifications are not essential, and if so, do not state that formal qualifications are desirable.
  • Make clear what training and development opportunities will be available to the successful candidate.
  • Make clear what support is available for carers or people with disabilities through the interview process and when working at Economy.

In the way that we make it known Economy is recruiting.

  • Posting job adverts in places where they are more likely to be seen by people that have talents, skills or experiences that are under-represented at Economy.
  • Asking partners to make opportunities known to the people they represent.
  • Reaching out to individuals with a particular perspective or experience and inviting them to apply.
  • In the way that we assess applications and interview for new roles.
  • Consider joint, job-share applications.
  • Understand that gaps in employment happen for a variety of reasons and can be positive for personal and professional development.
  • Criminal convictions should not necessarily preclude people from future employment. Candidates will be asked for a DBS check only if the role requires it.
  • Set criteria for shortlists, for example all shortlists will include women and BAME candidates.
  • Representative interview panels.
  • Interview environments that help people to shine. Candidates can wear what they feel most comfortable in and will be given time alone with the interview questions before starting.

In the way that we make appointment decisions.

  • Prioritising lived experience where engaging with a group or community is central to the role.
  • Prioritising aptitude and potential over formal education and career experience.
  • When candidates are of equal merit, we will prioritise the appointment of candidates from under-represented groups.

Support in the role

  • Encourage and facilitate flexible working options.
  • Provide training and development where there are skill or knowledge gaps.
  • Be proactive in ensuring Economy is making a positive contribution to health and wellbeing.

The Halo Code

Our workplace champions the right of staff to embrace all Afro-hairstyles. We acknowledge that Afro-textured hair is an important part of our Black employees’ racial, ethnic, cultural, and religious identities, and requires specific styling for hair health and maintenance.

We celebrate Afro-textured hair worn in all styles including, but not limited to, afros, locs, twists, braids, cornrows, fades, hair straightened through the application of heat or chemicals, weaves, wigs, headscarves, and wraps.

In this workplace, we recognise and celebrate our colleagues’ identities. We are a community built on an ethos of equality and respect where hair texture and style have no bearing on an employees ability to succeed.