Our strategic goal is to:

 be a diverse, inclusive organisation where our people thrive and respond to customers with fairness and empathy 

Diversity is one of our values, guiding how we act every day.

Our work to embed an inclusive environment for our customers and colleagues is based on an understanding that treating everyone fairly is not about treating everyone the same. It’s about appreciating that each person is an individual and understanding their needs. It's about working in a way that ensures everyone feels respected, valued, included and heard. 

To help us make progress, we have developed ‘Inclusion for all’, Sanctuary’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy.

Inclusion is about the individual's experience in the workplace and society.

Diversity is about valuing difference of all kinds e.g. social, economic, educational, professional, working style.

Equality is about fairness. It's about treating everyone in a way that ensures everyone has the same opportunity. This means working to tackle prejudice, unfair discrimination and barriers.

Graphic showing the definitions of Inclusion, Diversity and Equality.

*Protected characteristics – age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion and belief, sex, sexual orientation.

Our Strategy

Our Inclusion for all strategy focuses us on weaving equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) into the way we plan, develop and deliver all our services. We know that having an inclusive culture makes for a happier, more engaged, more productive workforce, better decision making, more innovation, improved risk management, and improved customer service. It’s good for our staff and good for our customers.

Our Executive Committee and Group Board provide strategic leadership and sponsorship. Together with our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Leaders Group and Network Co Chairs they form an alliance that is responsible for delivering progress against our four objectives:

  1. Create new ways to listen to diverse voices and promote an open culture, so that people in all their diversity can thrive.
  2. Increase organisational knowledge and awareness to embed a culture where all our people are confident in demonstrating inclusive behaviours.
  3. Develop involved and informed leaders who take ownership of equality, diversity and inclusion objectives.
  4. Build diversity and inclusion into the earliest stages of new projects and services to reflect the needs of the communities served.

Progress in achieving those objectives is monitored quarterly and all plans are renewed annually. We report on progress to Sanctuary’s Group Board every six months.

 

Governance

Delivery of our strategy is through the partnership working of three main groups. These are held accountable through regular reports to our Group Board. Please click on the dropdowns below to find out more about each group:

Our Executive Committee provides strategic leadership and sponsorship, taking ultimate accountability ensuring progress is made.

Our Executive Committee considers and shapes all EDI commitments for the organisation. Each Group Director is accountable for progress in their business area against the overarching organisational EDI goal and objectives. They work directly with their EDIG lead to shape improvement plans and sponsor their delivery.

The EDIG develops and ensures the implementation of business specific plans that progress each of the objectives.

The group comprises one leader from each business area. Members applied for the remit to work directly with their Group Directors to drive EDI progress in their business areas and were selected for their leadership capability and interest in EDI. Each member is responsible for working with their Group Director to develop, agree and implement business specific objectives. The group formally meets every quarter to report progress and align on strategic tasks for the following quarter.

A diagram showing the structure of Sanctuary Group's EDI Sponsor Group.

We have three networks. Each is run by volunteers and supported by D&I, Communications, HR and Technology specialists. Each provides one or more of the following: peer to peer support, raising awareness of the lived experiences of members, providing insight and feedback on policy.

Parent Network

Set-up by two mums in mid-2020, the network aims to connect colleagues going through all stages of parenting to provide support and guidance, offer conversation and give parents a voice.

PRISM (Pride, Respect, Inclusion, Support and Motivation)

Evolved in early 2021 by a group of LGBT+ colleagues and allies to provide peer to peer support to those who identify as sexual or gender minority individuals, to raise awareness of members experiences, and provide feedback to the organisation on improvements that would make a difference.

Race & Equality Network

Set-up by a group of colleagues of different races in early 2021. It aims to provide peer to peer support to racially and ethnically diverse staff, raise awareness of their experiences, and offer racial equality insight to the organisation to help it achieve its strategic goal.

Equality monitoring

At its simplest, monitoring is a process of collecting, storing and analysing demographic data and using this data to improve our services. We monitor what are known as protected characteristics as defined by the Equality Act 2010:

  • age
  • disability
  • gender reassignment
  • marriage and civil partnership
  • pregnancy and maternity
  • race
  • religion and belief
  • sex
  • sexual orientation

Vic Sewak

On the basis of information gathered, we are able to make improvements based on which groups may or may not be using our services.

It is not always obvious why we need this information and why we are asking such personal questions. The What's it got to do with you? brochure (PDF 439KB) can help with this as it explains the benefits of equality monitoring and just what the information is used for in an easily understandable way.

Disability Confident Employer

Sanctuary is a Disability Confident Employer, registered with the Government as a business which recognises that many disabled people have the skills, talents and experience that we are looking for.

This voluntary scheme, which replaces the previous Two Ticks standard, aims to help employers value the work of disabled people and those with long-term health conditions and ensure they have opportunities to fulfil their potential.

As part of our commitment, we conduct self-assessments to ensure that we are meeting our responsibilities in recruiting and retaining disabled people, and that we are also:

  • actively looking to attract and recruit disabled people
  • providing a fully inclusive and accessible recruitment process
  • flexible when assessing people so that disabled applicants can demonstrate that they can do the job
  • making reasonable adjustments (such as adaptations to premises or equipment) as required
  • supporting staff to manage their disabilities or health conditions
  • encouraging suppliers to be Disability Confident

Sanctuary staff member working at his desk.

Disability confident employer logo in black.

We are also members of the Business Disability Forum. We meet regularly and seek to make good use of their advice and services to improve our performance and deepen our capability as a disability confident employer.

 

Stonewall Diversity Champions

Sanctuary is dedicated to achieving sexual orientation and gender identity equality in the workplace. In order to assist in achieving these aims, Sanctuary is a member of the Stonewall Diversity Champions programme, a best practice employers’ forum.

The programme provides opportunities to enhance employee engagement, improve processes and procedures, and access new pools of talent through targeted recruitment.

Sanctuary recognises that all staff have a role to play in creating an inclusive environment for colleagues and the programme will assist Sanctuary in ensuring that this approach is embedded across all of its operations.

Pictured is Sanctuary's Group Chief Executive, Craig Moule, an ally within the Stonewall Diversity Champions Programme.

Sanctuary is a member of the Stonewall Diversity Champions Programme