The Charity Governance Code has recently been refreshed and one of the main changes is an updated version of the equality, diversity and inclusion Principle.
As we all know, good governance in charities is fundamental to their success. The Charity Governance Code is intended to be a practical tool to support charity trustees to establish and maintain high standards of governance.
The refreshed version of the Code is intended to meet the current needs of the sector in relation to equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and the updated Principle states:
‘The board has a clear, agreed and effective approach to supporting equality, diversity and inclusion throughout the organisation and in its own practice. This approach supports good governance and the delivery of the organisation’s charitable purposes.’
This is followed by a rationale, explaining why the principle is important, and a list of recommended practice.
We are aware that EDI can be a challenging area, especially for trustee boards of small charities, so it’s important to think about it as a journey and to make sure your approach is rooted in your charity’s specific context.
The Principle sets out four stages to help trustees think about their charity’s EDI journey:
- The first stage asks boards to think about why EDI is important for the charity, for the delivery of its aims, and to assess the current level of understanding amongst the board and throughout the organisation.
- The second stage proposes that boards set out tailored plans and targets based upon the charity’s starting point.
- Thirdly, boards are recommended to monitor and measure how well the charity is doing in meeting those plans and targets, including any targets which specifically relate to the board
- The fourth stage recommends that boards are transparent and publish the charity’s progress in meeting these targets, including any challenges, opportunities and learning.
Here are some resources that may be helpful to get you started thinking about how to apply the principle in your charity (English only):
- Video, Support for the EDI Principle
- Blog, Chaka Bachmann, Creating a Vision for Change
- Article, Pari Dhillon: Equality, diversity and inclusion is good governance
- Bates Wells, Diversity in Action: A Guide for Charities
WCVA is a member of the Charity Governance Code steering group. You can follow the Code on twitter @charitygovcode.