House of Commons Diversity and Inclusion Awards

House of Commons Diversity and Inclusion Awards

The House of Commons Diversity and Inclusion Awards have been developed to recognise individuals and teams for their contribution to promoting, delivering and embedding the Diversity and Inclusion Strategy and wider inclusion-related work, which aims to create an equal, diverse and inclusive environment for all on the parliamentary estate.

The annual awards are a way of highlighting people who are making a difference to diversity and inclusion in Parliament, and a chance to recognise what they have achieved.

The award categories:

  • Embedding Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI): this award recognises an individual’s or team’s effort to embed EDI into mainstream work; through their approach and undertaking of all tasks, be it day-to-day tasks or larger projects.
  • Ensuring Access and Inclusion: this award is for a team or individual who have demonstrated their commitment to ensuring EDI principles are core to their area of work and this is reflected in positive outcomes.
  • Catalyst for Change: an award for a person or a team doing things differently by incorporating EDI values into the way they work resulting in a positive shift in organisational culture
  • Inspiring Role Model: this award is for a person who has taken the opportunity to engage with staff, speaking openly about their personal experiences in a visible forum that encourages and champions diversity and inclusion in a way that new and existing staff can relate to

2016 Diversity and Inclusion Awards winners

The fourth Diversity and Inclusion Awards took place at the Young Vic Theatre on 15 June. Award recipients were honoured at a ceremony, with awards presented by Mr Speaker and the Lord Speaker. Runners-up and winners were announced in four categories:

Embedding Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

Runner-up: Megan
Meg has taken a number of steps to help embed equality, diversity and inclusion in the House of Lords. These include drafting a paper to the Lords’ Leader’s Group, raising the case for the Lords to develop its own D&I strategy, and championing the need for board members to have equality objectives.

Winner: Robert
Robert makes continual efforts to embed equality, diversity and inclusion into mainstream work. Robert is passionate about raising Parliament’s profile as an inclusive employer, most notably by leading on Parliament’s participation in Pride in London.  Last year, ParliOUT achieved its most successful appearance at Pride with the largest number of people attending to date. He has also led the drive to buy and fly the rainbow flag over Portcullis House on Pride weekend.

Catalyst for Change

Runners-up: Lords Committee Office
The Lords Committee Office supported the work of the ad hoc committee on the Equality Act and its impact on disabled people. They have shown an exemplary willingness to think rigorously about the ways we work and to adapt them proactively to ensure that the committee get the most out of members and witnesses who are disabled. This included steering through changes to the House of Lords’ own rules, gaining disabled members of the committee dispensation to vote during divisions in the Chamber from the Committee Room and taking oral evidence via British Sign Language interpretation.

Winner: Ann
Ann devised a workplace adjustment survey to listen to people’s experiences and capture these so that the House can better support those who work on the Parliamentary Estate with a more joined-up process. This will result in producing a guide for employees and employers. This should lead to change in the House and Digital Service, as research has shown that companies with a clear adjustment policy have higher rates of people who tell their employer officially about their disability.

Most Improved in Access and Inclusion

Runner-up: Dominic
One of Dom’s key achievements this year has been the successful coordination of information for the House of Commons’s Disability Standard submission.  Dom has made it his mission to improve the scoring this year and to ensure that as an organisation we seek to continuously improve in his area of responsibility. Dom worked with the Web and Intranet Service, Print Services, and Outreach and Engagement to get examples of accessible ways in which the House of Commons communicates with both internal and  external audiences.

Winner: Simon & Tracey
Simon, with the support of Tracey, has led the work of the Visitor & Retail Services teams to support the strategy to enable greater access to the Palace of Westminster. Their work involves regularly assessing and improving our facilities and processes for external visitors. They actively consider Equality, Diversity & Inclusion in their approach to everyday work and consult broadly to ensure that equality implications of a new policy, process, procedure or project are considered and addressed.

Inspiring Role Model

Runner-up: Samir
Sam has been an inspirational leader in his department. Sam leads a team that regularly hits targets, provides a great customer service, works well together, is inclusive of values and feels part of a bigger ‘corporate’ entity. Sam leads by example, setting high standards and helping others to get there.

Winner: Kirsty
Kirsty won the Inspiring Role Model Award for authentically promoting the idea that you should ‘bring your whole self’ to work. Kirsty was able to challenge a senior member of staff and explain in detail how important the issue of using inclusive language was and the need for a degree of sensitivity in the words we use. She also explained how the issue touched on her personally, demonstrating that she brought her whole self to work. The point was made that we are, and must always continue to be, the kind of organisation where everyone can feel free to say what they think in feedback to colleagues, and for open and constructive dialogue to follow.

Special Recognition Award

Winner: Francene
A ‘Special Recognition’ award was also presented to Francene for having made a number of contributions to different areas of Parliament, including work on equality analyses across Parliament, speaking out against non-inclusive behaviour, acting as one of the Parliamentary Role Models, providing support to individuals as a Harassment Contact Officer, and being secretary of ParliREACH since its inception three years ago.


The Diversity & Inclusion Awards nominations are open to parliamentary pass-holders only.

Further information

Diversity Monitoring reports:

The Workplace Equality Networks

The four WENs

ParliAble: in support of disabled people in Parliament. It is open to both those who consider themselves to have a disability and those who have an interest in supporting disabled people.

Parliagender: in support for gender equality. Our aim is to achieve gender equality across Parliament.

ParliREACH: in support of increasing awareness and appreciation of race, ethnicity and cultural heritage issues in Parliament.

ParliOUT:  in support of LGBTIQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersexual, and questioning) people in Parliament