Equality, diversity, and inclusion are, of course, a core aim of social work practice. Prejudice and social injustice are often linked to other social issues which negatively affect people’s lives. In a child and family social work context, social workers can play a key role in empowering and supporting families to embrace equality and inclusion.
What does Equality, Diversity and Inclusion mean?
Ensuring equality means that people are offered the same opportunities and privileges, regardless of characteristics like age, race, sex, sexual orientation, disability, or their beliefs.
Diversity is about celebrating, respecting and finding value in the differences between people. A diverse group of people can share a variety of perspectives, cultures and lived experiences.
Inclusion focuses on social experiences. It’s important that people from all backgrounds feel both valued and included. Rather than simply introducing rules to ensure people have the same opportunities, a truly inclusive organisation or group should have a culture which makes everyone feel welcome.
Self-reflection is another area of particular relevance to social work practice. Services are constantly being evaluated and reflected upon to ensure that all segments of society are treated fairly when they interact with social workers. Through reflection, unconscious or institutional biases can be identified and challenged.