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MESP/EICSP Equal Opportunities Policy

Policy Statement


EICSP/MESP is committed to the promotion of the principle of Equal Opportunity and to the eradication of discrimination and discriminatory practices.


EICSP/MESP undertakes to ensure that all job applicants, employees, service providers, volunteers and participants in the range of EICSP/MESP activities are treated with due respect, and in a spirit of fairness and equality, and in all aspects of our activities we also prohibit unjustifiable discrimination on grounds of race, ethnicity or nationality, gender, sexual orientation, faith identity, spiritual identity, secular identity or worldview, disability or HIV/AIDS status, marital or relational status, political opinion, work pattern, age, socio-economic background, trade union activity or membership, or on the basis of having or not having dependants.
Scope

The Equal Opportunities Policy relates to all job applicants, employees, service providers, volunteers and participants in the range of EICSP/MESP activities.

Responsibilities, Monitoring and the Implementation of the Policy

Each participant in the EICSP/MESP activities has responsibility for their own compliance with the Equal Opportunities Policy. The EICSP/MESP Board has responsibility for monitoring the Equal Opportunities Policy, and any reported breach of the Equal Opportunities Policy will be addressed by the EICSP/MESP Board.

EICSP/MESP considers that the value of an Equal Opportunities Policy lies not merely in its intention, but also in its practical delivery. It is important, therefore, that the EICSP/MESP also reflects, where possible, its Equal Opportunities Policy within the content areas of its programme of work.

Four Areas for Implementation of our Equal Opportunities Policy


The focus: Recruitment and Selection
Our goal: To promote the principle of Equal Opportunity through our recruitment policies and demonstration of good practice.
The focus: Awareness, Training and Development
Our goal: To structure Equal Opportunities Awareness training as part of all EICSP/MESP Board development, and to develop Equal Opportunities Awareness for employees, service providers, volunteers and participants.
The focus: Service Provision
Our goal: To demonstrate our commitment to the prevention of individuals or groups suffering disadvantage through unequal and discriminatory practices in the field of our activities.
The focus: Audit and Monitoring Systems
Our goal: To establish effective audit and monitoring systems.
Definitions

EICSP/MESP recognises discrimination as being a process of acting unfairly against an individual or group by exclusion, verbal comment, denigration, misrepresentation or false representation, or through failure to appreciate needs, or the assumption of such needs, without consultation.

It should be noted that for the purpose of this Equal Opportunities Policy the term 'race' should be taken to include colour, nationality, ethnic and/or national origins as outlined by the Race Relations Act, 1976.

References

Where referred to in this Equal Opportunities Policy, activity is undertaken in relation to the following Acts, including subsequent amendments:

¥ Equal Pay Act, 1970 (as amended)
¥ Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, 1974
¥ Sex Discrimination Act, 1975 (as amended)
¥ Race Relations Act, 1976
¥ Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidated) Act 1992
¥ Disability Discrimination Act, 1995 (DDA)
¥ Asylum and Immigration Act 1996
¥ Protection from Harassment Act, 1997
¥ Human Rights Act 1998
¥ Disability Rights Commission Act 1999 (DRC)
¥ The Sex Discrimination (Gender Reassignment Regulations) 1999
¥ Employee Rights Act 1999
¥ The Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000
¥ Employment Equality (Religion and Belief) Regulations 2003
¥ Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003
¥ Disability Discrimination (Public Authorities)(Statutory Duties)(Scotland) Regulations 2005
¥ Equality Act 2006
¥ Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006

Some Specific Examples Illustrating The Equal Opportunities Policy


1. Race, Ethnicity and Nationality Equality: everyone is welcome in all activities of the EICSP/MESP regardless of the personÕs race, ethnicity or nationality. The EICSP/MESP encourages and supports specific diverse community groups to host activities during the MESP, e.g., Moroccan, Kurdish, Iraqi, Iranian, Turkish, etc.
2. Gender Equality: women and men of all backgrounds are welcome at all EICSP/MESP activities, and the EICSP/MESP aspires to a good balance of male and female speakers and facilitators throughout the MESP. The EICSP/MESP has also supported the development of some all-women activities.
3. Sexual Orientation Equality: everyone is welcome in all activities of the EICSP/MESP regardless of the personÕs sexual orientation.
4. Faith/Spirituality/Secular Identities or Worldviews Equality: all faith and spiritual traditions and secular identities and worldviews are treated in equality, and the EICSP/MESP does not promote any faith or spiritual tradition or secular identity or worldview over any other. Everyone participates in the EICSP/MESP as an individual, and people of mixed faith or spirituality, or of secular identity or worldview are equally welcome to participate in all EICSP/MESP activities. The EICSP/MESP encourages and supports specific diverse faith, spiritual, secular or cultural community groups to host activities during the MESP.
5. Disability or HIV/AIDS Status Equality: the EICSP/MESP aspires to make EICSP/MESP activities as accessible as possible. This includes issues of disabled access or access for all by HIV/AIDS status, having some EICSP/MESP activities in disadvantaged parts of the city, and having a good range of free activities and relatively inexpensive activities to keep the EICSP/MESP accessible to Senior Citizens, the Unwaged, Students and the Disabled. The EICSP/MESP also offers bursaries to people on very low income.
6. Marital or Relational Status: everyone is welcome in all activities of the EICSP/MESP regardless of the personÕs marital or relational status.
7. Political Opinion: everyone is welcome in all activities of the EICSP/MESP regardless of the personÕs political opinion or party political membership.
8. Work Pattern: everyone is welcome in all activities of the EICSP/MESP regardless of the personÕs work pattern or work status.
9. Age: everyone is welcome in all activities of the EICSP/MESP regardless of the personÕs age, though those under 18 must be accompanied by a responsible adult.
10. Socio Economic Background: everyone is welcome in all activities of the EICSP/MESP regardless of the personÕs socio economic background.
11. Trade Union Activity or Membership: everyone is welcome in all activities of the EICSP/MESP regardless of the personÕs trade union activity or membership.
12: Having or not Having Dependants: everyone is welcome in all activities of the EICSP/MESP regardless of the personÕs dependants.
13. Diversity: the EICSP/MESP positively celebrates the spiritual and cultural diversity of Scotland, and also of the Middle East.
14. Political and Ethical Issues: the EICSP/MESP is non-political in nature, and the EICSP/MESP takes up no fixed position on political, ethical or cultural questions. The EICSP/MESP provides forums for differing points of view to be shared, heard and respected, rather than promoting any one point of view over other points of view.
15. Verbally Abusive Conduct: The EICSP/MESP has a Zero Tolerance Policy on verbally abusive conduct, including verbally abusive remarks based on 1-14 above, or personality or identity attacks of any kind.