Statement on Equality and Diversity
Our statement of commitment to equality and diversity
The Institute of Counselling is open to people, places, methods and ideas.
We promote educational opportunity and social justice by providing high-quality courses
across our area of expertise to all who wish to realise their ambitions and fulfil their potential.
Our mission expresses our desire to provide a high level of counselling, education and
training, through flexible and accessible tutor-supported online and distance learning in a manner which sustains and
develops practical counselling skills and knowledge, informed by a Christian spirituality.
Our founding aspiration is to provide opportunities for all. As such, equality and diversity have been part of the core behaviours of the Institute since its inception in 1985.
Our continued dedication to social justice and equality of opportunity is embodied in our Equal Opportunities and Diversity Policy. Through this, we will strengthen our position as a training provider of choice.
Our commitment to our students and staff
- We are committed to providing an inclusive culture in which all individuals are encouraged to participate fully and are treated on the basis of their abilities.
- We will treat individuals with dignity and respect and provide an environment that is free from prejudice, bullying, harassment and unlawful discrimination. We will take action to challenge inappropriate behaviour and discriminatory practice.
- We recognise that different people and groups have different needs and that people have multiple-identities and multiple-needs. We will make reasonable adjustments and proportional changes to our processes and procedures in order to meet the needs and circumstances of our students, staff and partners.
- We will provide our staff and associates with the knowledge and skills they need to understand and meet their equality and diversity responsibilities.
The following principles guide our approach to equality and diversity:
- We value diversity highly. We recognise that different people bring different perspectives, ideas, opinions, histories, knowledge and culture and that this difference brings great strength.
- We do not discriminate based on a person's age, disability, family circumstance, gender, political opinion, race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin, religion or belief, sexual orientation, socio-economic background, trade union membership or other distinctions. Such forms of discrimination represent a waste of human resources and a denial of opportunity for individual self-fulfilment.
- We understand that actual or perceived differences in beliefs or values can arise between different groups in society. We respect the rights of individuals and groups to hold their own views and values, but will not allow these to be manifested in a way that intimidates or humiliates, or is hostile or degrading to others.
Equality Act, Department of Health
In accordance with the 'Equality Act', Department of Health (DOH), (2010), the IoC aims to:
- 'Eliminate discrimination, harrassment and victimisation and advance equality of opportunity for our students'.
'Disability' has been identified as one of the 'protected characteristics' by the DOH in the 2010 'Equality Act', Part 2, Chapter 2, Number 15.
In order to fully support our students, the IoC aims to provide a positive strategy rather than a reactive policy. Therefore the following points will provide evidence that the IoC takes seriously the need to support students who have disclosed a disability to the IoC that comes under the remit of 'reasonable adjustments'.
- If requested by the student, an assessment of their needs will be carried out on the instruction of the Senior Tutor/General Manager.
- A record will be made of any reasonable adjustments requested by the student.
- A review of the outcome will be carried out.