Implementing the NHS Workforce Disability Equality Standard (WDES)
The NHS Workforce Disability Equality Standard (WDES) is designed to improve workplace experience and career opportunities for disabled people working for or seeking employment within the NHS. The WDES follows the NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) as a tool and an enabler of change.
The WDES is a series of evidence-based metrics that will provide NHS organisations with a snapshot of the experiences of their disabled staff in key areas. By providing comparative data between disabled and non-disabled staff, this information can be used to understand where key differences lie and will provide the basis for the development of action plans, enabling organisations to track progress on a year by year basis. The WDES enables organisations to assess whether their workforce reflects the diversity of the populations they serve in terms of disability equality.
In order to comply with the requirements of WDES, NHS organisations are expected to develop an action plan with measures and practices that positively support disability equality in the workplace. The expectation is that Trusts will work with the relevant affected staff group and community to co-produce appropriate actions to help improve disability equality. Stakeholder involvement and engagement will be central to this. NHS England have mandated that WDES action plans be ratified by the Trust Board and be published by 30 September 2019.
We have now developed our 12 month WDES Action Plan as required by NHS England to drive our performance forward. The Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Group have been consulted with and endorsed the associated action plan below. The People and Organisational Development Committee have endorsed and ratified the action plan on behalf of the Trust Board.
We believe that by implementing the actions outlined in the WDES action plan we will ensure ESNEFT is positioned to improve the experiences of disabled staff within the organisation and enable the Trust to comply with NHS WDES metrics and support our legal compliance. Our Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Group will provide leadership and assurance to the POD Committee on a quarterly basis of the progress being made with this action plan.
For further information please contact: Julia.Smyth@esneft.nhs.uk (Julia Smyth, Associate Director of OD & Culture).Back to top