Project launched to help improve equality in social care

Skills for Care and the Care Provider Alliance (CPA) have launched a project to help improve equality in social care.

Evidence from the health sector shows that the treatment of staff and opportunities for development falls short of standards of good practice, most notably for black, Asian and ethnic minority (BAME) workers, who are a substantial proportion of the workforce in many parts of the country.

Research suggests a valued and inclusive workforce helps in delivering high quality care.

To help remedy this problem, the two bodies intend to create guidance for employers that draws on best practice and includes practical proposals for overcoming obstacles.

The alliance said that evidence from the national minimum data set for social care (NMDS-SC) ‘may demonstrate a lack of equity in career progression for BAME colleagues’, adding that further analysis of the NMDS-SC is needed.

Dr Rhidian Hughes, chair of the CPA said: ‘The time has come to seriously tackle the challenges that Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic staff face in progressing their careers within the social care sector. By grasping the nettle, future services will be better placed to back the principles of personalisation, choice and control through diverse and inclusive workplaces.’

The chief executive for Skills for Care, Sharon Allen, said that its partnership with the CPA will help to ‘identify the obstacles that face aspiring BAME leaders in adult social care, but also put in place practical measures to tackle them. Skills for Care already runs our Moving Up BAME programme supporting managers to establish themselves within senior leadership management roles and we recognise the pressing need to do much more.’

Skills for Care and the CPA will be examining data, gaining intelligence about strengths, barriers and solutions, and considering how to develop new models of care in the sector.

A series of workshops across the country for sharing good practice, aimed at leaders and managers, will take place at the end of the month and in April.