Our aim is to build a workforce that reflects the diversity of our communities and attracts the best talent from the widest pool of people. However some groups of people are currently under represented either in our workforce as a whole or in particular positions.
Employees from ethnic minority groups and with disabilities are currently under represented across Essex Police while women are under represented in senior management positions and the role of police officer. Men are under represented in administrative roles.
Under represented is a term used to describe the situation whereby the diversity of the local community is not accurately reflected in the workplace. It’s worked out by taking the make up of the local population of working age and comparing it to the current workforce at Essex Police
We’re working to make sure the diversity of the community is reflected by our workforce. That’s where positive action comes in.
Positive action refers to measures designed to counteract the effects of past discrimination and help eliminate stereotyping.
It’s not about favouring some people over others but is a way of helping employers encourage people from under represented groups to apply for jobs and promotions.
Sadly, some people believe they won’t fit in to an organisation because of their lifestyle or background. Their past experiences may even have led them to think they wouldn’t be welcome as an employee.
Positive action aims to dispel these myths, show potential employees how organisations have changed and emphasise that applications are very welcome from people from under represented groups. Final selection for a post is always made on merit however.
Positive action is not the same as positive discrimination. Positive discrimination is unlawful in the UK but certain positive action initiatives are permitted by law. For example, the Disability Discrimination Act (now covered under the Equality Duty 2010) and Government Two Ticks Scheme were introduced to support the employment of people with disabilities.
We’re committed to developing a diverse workforce and are currently considering issues relating to under representation in support staff and police specialist posts.