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Equalities - policy statement

Surrey libraries wish to ensure equality of access for all in the provision of our services and facilities.

The Equality Act 2010 extends the current equality strands protected by various legislation and introduces protected characteristics. The protected characteristics covered by the legislation are:

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender reassignment
  • Marriage and civil partnership
  • Pregnancy and maternity
  • Race
  • Religion and belief
  • Sex
  • Sexual orientation

The Public Sector Equalities Duties mean public bodies have to go beyond a 'one size fits all' approach and develop and deliver services that meet the needs of all service users. This in turn should lead to far more effective focusing of public funds and increased access to, and satisfaction with, public services.

We acknowledge that discrimination is deemed to have occurred when a person is treated less favourably for a reason relating to his/her protected characteristic and there is a failure, on our part, to make reasonable adjustment for that protected characteristic.

To reflect our commitment to the Act, we ensure that staff, volunteers, and members of the public who access our services are not discriminated against directly or indirectly because of any characteristic they have or may have had.

Our service

  • Adheres to SCC's commitment to providing equal opportunity in employment. It aims to avoid causing disadvantage to any employee or job applicant on any grounds.
  • Ensures equalities issues are covered in the induction of all staff and volunteers and offers suitable training for staff and volunteers to enable them to challenge inaccurate perceptions.
  • Follows SCCs policies and the Customer Promise with regard to customer service.
  • Ensures that equality and diversity is embedded in our service planning and management processes, including keeping policies up to date through an annual review, and carrying out Equality Impact Assessments.
  • Applies assistive technology to removing barriers to use of the service's facilities.
  • Offers events that appropriately reflect the tastes and abilities of individuals with the protected characteristics.
  • Offers a wide range of stock that aims to respect all people, satisfy customer demand and reflect the diverse needs, interests and abilities of our customers in order that they may fulfill personal aspirations to the best of their abilities.
  • Applies good practise when planning rebuilds or refurbishments to eliminate barriers to use.
  • Ensures that communications are as accessible as possible, by applying plain English, appropriate formats and languages.
  • Works with appropriate groups to seek and act on feedback in order to continuously improve.

April 2013.

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