Diversity and Inclusion – Removing barriers and improving the quality of services
Diversity describes the personal characteristics and attributes that help shape who we are and what is important to us.
Valuing diversity and creating an inclusive and welcoming environment is about recognising, respecting and drawing on the positive aspect of difference whilst proactively challenging discrimination and removing the barriers and disadvantage that people can experience. The positive steps we take to empower people and communities to be active participants and leaders is at the core of creating inclusive access. Developing services that respond to the diverse backgrounds, interests and needs of people will ensure they feel valued and are receiving services that are appropriate and person centred.
Through the Commonwealth Home Support Program (CHSP) and HACC Program for Younger People (HACC PYP), Diversity Planning and Practice has been established to remove the barriers people can experience in accessing services. It also seeks to improve the capacity of the service system to respond appropriately to client's interests and needs. Diversity Planning requires organisations to learn about their local community in order to understand which community groups aren’t accessing their services and why and then develop a plan to address that underrepresentation.
Diversity planning and practice recognises the many different diversity characteristics of communities and individuals. Under the CHSP and HACC PYP diversity planning includes a particular focus on the following characteristics referred to as special needs groups:
While the above characteristics are identified as special needs groups, they do not represent all aspects of diversity and organisations must consider diversity in its broadest terms. It is also vital that organisations consider how diversity characteristics intersect with each other as highlighted in the Diversity Jigsaw and discussed in the Connecting the Pieces video and resource
To access resources developed through the EMR Alliance or link to other external resources visit our resources page