Workplace Race Equality Standard (WRES)

Background

Alongside the WRES, NHS organisations use the Equality and Diversity Systems (EDS2) to help in discussion with local partners including local populations, review and improve their performance for people with characteristics protected by the Equality Act 2010. The main purpose of the WRES is:

  • To help local, and national, NHS organisations (and other organisations providing NHS services) to review their data against the nine WRES indicators.
  • To produce action plans to close the gaps in workplace experience between white  and Black and Ethnic Minority (BME) staff, and
  • To improve BME representation at the Board level of the organisation.

WRES toolkit — Clinical Commissioning Groups

Clinical commissioning Groups (CCGs) have two roles in relation to the WRES, as commissioners of NHS services and as employers. The CCG Improvement and Assessment Framework requires CCGs to give assurance to NHS England that their providers are implementing and using the WRES.

Implementing the WRES and working on its results and subsequent action plans should be a part of contract monitoring and negotiation between CCGs and their respective providers.

CCGs should have meaningful dialogue with those providers if there is something amiss with the providers’ implementation or use of the WRES, and/or what the results of WRES actually show.

WRES toolkit — Providers

The WRES applies to all types of providers of non-primary healthcare services operating under the full length version of the NHS Standard Contract, and so is applicable to NHS providers, independent sector providers, and voluntary sector providers.

The NHS standard contract, requires all providers of NHS services (other than primary care) to address the issue of workforce race inequality by implementing and using the WRES.

The Provider must implement the National WRES and submit an annual report to the co-ordinating commissioner on its progress in implementing that standard.

Demonstration of good leadership

CCGs, CSUs and Providers should commit to the principles of the WRES and apply as much of it as possible to their own workforce. In this way, CCGs can demonstrate good leadership, identify concerns within their workforces, and set an example for their providers.

CCGs are not required by the NHS standard contract to fully apply the WRES to themselves as some CCG workforces may be too small for the WRES indicators to either work properly or to comply with the Data Protection Act.

Neighbouring or similar (comparator) CCGs may wish to submit a jointly co-ordinated WRES report and action plan; this can counter any potential risk of small workforce numbers.

Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) and Action Plan

We are required under the NHS England Standard Contract to publish information annually to demonstrate compliance with the WRES. The CCG’s new website launch is scheduled for mid-September, at which point its 2017 Workforce Race Equality Standard Report will be published shortly after.

The action plan is currently being considered in light of changes to the demographic profile as a result of the boundary change and what reasonable measures can be made within an environment of a low BME population base and small employee size. This will include understanding how individuals from BME backgrounds are both supported and represented and ensuring our recruitment processes are inclusive and accessible.

Progress on these actions will be included in the CCG’s 2017 Public Sector Annual Report.