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Diversity and Inclusion Strategy 2019-2022

At the House of Commons we aim to provide a positive, inclusive working environment where people are valued for the skills and experience that they bring to work. Our aim is to be representative of the society we serve. This means making Parliament more accessible, diverse and free from discrimination.

About the Strategy

The 2019-2022 Diversity and Inclusion Strategy underpins the strategic aim of the House of Commons to ‘support a thriving parliamentary democracy'. Therefore, it is imperative that the staff of the House reflect the people we serve and that we deliver services which reflect the diversity of our democracy.

Though we have made progress over the years, there is still more work to do to reap the benefits of D&I. For the benefits to be felt, we must create an environment where differences of thought and outlook are not only respected but expected.

We want all our staff to feel that they can be themselves at work, valued for the distinct perspective that they bring, and that they are able to access opportunities, irrespective of their age, disability, ethnicity, faith, gender identity, sex, sexual identity or socio-economic background.

Our commitment to D&I is grounded in, but not limited to, our responsibilities under the equality legislation. The Equality Act 2010 sets out the ways in which everyone is protected by the legislation.

Our commitment to D&I is embedded into the four House of Commons strategic objectives:

  1.  Facilitating Effective Scrutiny and Debate
  2.  Involving and Inspiring the Public
  3.  Securing Parliament's Future
  4.  Creating an Inclusive Working Environment

Objectives will be delivered through the Corporate D&I Action Plan. The D&I Action Plan will be monitored by the D&I Steering Group, which will meet quarterly to ensure progress of the D&I Action Plan and to keep D&I at the forefront of the work of each team.

The Strategy has been endorsed by the Speaker of the House of Commons and the House of Commons Executive Board.

Find out more about Diversity & Inclusion at the House of Commons

Workplace Equality Networks (WENs)

The House of Commons and House of Lords have established Workplace Equality Networks (WENs) to provide an opportunity for groups of people to discuss and consider issues relevant to their situation or of interest to them. In particular, WENs can be useful forums for groups protected by equality legislation. WENs are open to all pass holders in the Commons, Lords, Parliamentary Digital Service, contractors employed by Parliament, MPs, Peers and their staff. Membership is not restricted to people who share a protected characteristic relating to these WENs but those involved are required to respect the aims of the Networks.

Workplace Equality Networks are each run by an elected committee, which includes an appointed Chair and a Treasurer. The Diversity and Inclusion teams of each House allocate every WEN a small annual budget of £6,000 (paid for by the House of Commons and the House of Lords). Funds must be spent on activities which directly support the objectives of the WEN, such as educational events or awareness raising, and all spending must be approved by the committee in question.

Diversity and Inclusion Strategy documents:

Diversity Monitoring reports:

The National Autistic Society's Autism Friendly Award

Inclusive Employers

The House of Commons is a member of Inclusive Employers, the UK's first and leading membership organisation for employers looking to build inclusive workplaces.

Business Disability Forum's ‘Disability Standard'

The House of Commons participates in the Business Disability Forum's ‘Disability Standard', a tool to help business to measure and improve on performance for disabled customers, clients or service users, employees and stakeholders.

Top 100 Employers

The House of Commonswas placed 23rd in Stonewall's Top 100 Employers 2018.

Stonewall's Diversity Champions

The programme is Britain's good practice employers' forum on sexual orientation. We work with Stonewall to help make your workplace the best it can be.

The National Autistic Society's Autism Friendly Award

The House of Commons has been awarded The National Autistic Society's Autism Friendly Award, whichchampions premises who commit to making sure that autistic visitors receive the same warm welcome as everybody else.

Find out more