NATIONAL SAVINGS & INVESTMENTS EQUALITY AND DIVERSITY INFORMATION STATEMENT

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1 NATIONAL SAVINGS & INVESTMENTS EQUALITY AND DIVERSITY INFORMATION STATEMENT Foreword I am pleased to present this Equality and Diversity Information Statement for National Savings and Investments ( ) as required by the Equality Act This document sets out s overall approach to equality and diversity both as an employer and as a provider of services. It also covers s approach to the public sector equality duty (the PSED ) which came into force in April Leadership, commitment and partnership working at all levels are central to s success. As Chief Executive of I am committed to ensuring that we take account of our stakeholders views and that we drive forward progress on the development of specific equality objectives that will identify the priorities for action on equality. The measures of s Equality and Diversity achievements are publicly available on our website Jane Platt 12 April

2 OUR VISION Service, value and trust NATIONAL SAVINGS & INVESTMENT EQUALITY AND DIVERSITY INFORMATION STATEMENT OUR MISSION Our overall aim is to help reduce the cost to the taxpayer of government borrowing now and in the future OUR VALUES Our values are at the heart of everything we do: Security: we offer a promise of 100% security, backed by HM Treasury Integrity: we are honest and responsible in everything that we do and say Straightforwardness: we always use clear, everyday language that is easy to understand Delivered with a human touch, pace and confidence: we treat our customers as individuals, recognise their needs and act on their behalf decisively and professionally We set our rates to balance the interests of three groups: our customers offering them a fair rate taxpayers with our remit to raise cost-effective finance for government the wider financial services sector supporting stability In terms of operations, is not generally responsible for policy implementation or for service delivery. It meets the public service equality duty primarily through its leadership role. It does this by prompting policies and setting standards for its partners and requiring that the impact of policy and service delivery avoids discrimination, promotes equality and best practice. EQUALITY LEGISLATION The Equality Act (2010) provides protection for the individual against prohibited conduct such as direct and indirect discrimination, harassment and victimisation and a duty to make adjustments for disabled people in certain circumstances. The law imposes a general duty on public authorities, such as, to have due regard in all that we do to: eliminate discrimination, harassment and victimisation advance equality of opportunity between persons who share a relevant protected characteristic and persons who do not share it; and foster good relations between persons who share a relevant protected characteristic and persons who do not share it. The relevant characteristics are: age, disability, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, marriage and civil partnership, sex and sexual orientation. 2

3 Specific duties also applied to listed authorities including and essentially provide guidance on how to better meet the general duties. A central element in this context will be the setting and publication of clear equality objectives and related data by which the public can assess our performance and hold us to account. EQUALITY AND DIVERSITY STATEMENT As a public authority is committed to ensuring our policies and employment practices are fair, accessible and appropriate for the diverse society we serve and the workforce we employ. Our approach is based on the work that we do rather than how we are structured as an organisation. Leadership and commitment at all levels are central to success enabling individuals and organisations influence and shape the work we do. is one of the UK's largest financial providers with over 25 million customers and over 123 billion invested. To be successful we need to: understand the society in which we operate be clear about the impact of our policies and operations on that society conduct our business with sensitivity and respect for people s different needs and perspectives on life Through increased transparency and robust scrutiny of how we treat people and how we engage with our customers, we will ensure that equality remains at the heart of s business. This is reflected in our Vulnerable Customers Policy, which guides the business to ensure we duly consider vulnerability when we define and deliver our products and services, our Customer Experience Principles and Standards in all aspects of our work is committed to treating our customers fairly and with the dignity and respect to which they are entitled. In 2015 we launched 65+ Guaranteed Growth Bonds to all individuals aged 65 years and over. The Equality Act 2010 (Age Exceptions) Order 2012 recognises that financial services products need to be designed to meet the needs of customers and customer groups. It allows organisations to do this by specifically exempting financial services products in respect of age discrimination. Partnership working meets the public sector equality duty (PSED) primarily through setting policies and standards for its service delivery partners and ensuring that the impact of policy and service delivery avoids discrimination, promotes equality and best practice. will work with its partners to promote equality by: sharing existing information and good practice gathering new information developing joint consultation and involvement methods and structures where appropriate developing joint working and co-delivery of services where practicable pooling budgets and resources where practicable 3

4 APPROACH TO EQUALITY is committed to eliminating discrimination and promoting equality in both our policies and how we deliver our services. We will reach out to employees, customers and other stakeholders using appropriate channels of communication. In 2015 we launched such an engagement exercise to ensure we understood the specific needs of our disadvantaged customers. This process involved face to face interviews with people who have a long term health condition, in depth interviews with disability organisations, expert reviews and mystery shopping. Encouraging diversity in recruitment and valuing the diversity we have among our own staff is key to our success and effectiveness. We want to be a fair and inclusive organisation, respecting what each person brings to our business and recognising the value they add. In 2015/16 all staff have been trained to avoid unconscious bias in their decision making. We have introduced name-blind recruitment for all roles, to support managers to avoid bias in their recruitment decisions. The Chief Executive as Accounting Officer has overall responsibility for the effective implementation of s equality duties. Executive directors have a strategic responsibility to ensure that equality is built into policies and procedures. They also have an important role of developing relationships with community groups and individuals and to encourage dialogue with. We have identified a Member Champion, the Acting Director of Retail, to provide leadership on this issue from a customer perspective. All employees and others doing work on behalf of are responsible for working together to promote equality and fairness both in the way that they treat customers and fellow members of staff and through the services they provide to the public. We have identified a Lead Officer, the Director of People & Strategy to provide leadership on this issue from a staff perspective. OUR PUBLIC ACCESS ARRANGEMENTS is committed to ensuring that information and services are fully accessible to all parts of the community. We keep our arrangements under review to ensure that this remains the case. We recognise that some groups will not have the same level of access to information as others, e.g. people with sensory, learning, communication and mobility disabilities may require printed information in other formats. We will provide different ways for our customers to access our information services and suitable alternative formats. GOVERNANCE has a policy to achieve gender balance on its senior management body the Executive Committee (ExCo). The current balance as at 31 January 2016 is four men and three women. To achieve the policy, has followed fair and open recruitment practices. In addition, we consider gender in our succession planning for ExCo, in our pay and appraisal outcomes and in our talent management. Progress is reported annually. EMPLOYMENT Our People Strategy commits to attract, develop, engage and retain diverse people with the right skills and capabilities to meet the needs of the business now and in the future. As an employer, will promote equality in employment in order to: help make the workforce more representative of the community it serves attract talented staff 4

5 avoid losing or under-valuing able staff improve staff morale and productivity improve the way staff are managed help to develop good practice meet its statutory obligations In the last year, we have introduced: shared parental leave; a flexible working pilot scheme offering a benefit of a 9 day fortnight; and name-blind recruitment. AWARENESS RAISING AND TRAINING recognise that awareness raising and training play a crucial role in the effective implementation of the Public Sector Equality Duty. Accordingly training has been provided: to all staff to raise awareness of the PSED and how to avoid unconscious bias to ensure that our staff fully understand their roles and obligations to those staff involved in the assessment of policies (equality screening and Equality Impact Assessments) with the necessary skills and knowledge to do this work effectively We have provided internal communications on diversity issues. MEASURING PROGRESS We will track progress in a number of ways: Customer Satisfaction Rates Customer Effort Scores Annual Staff Surveys Staff and Customer Diversity Statistics Recruitment Audit Results Partnership Surveys Executive Committee Minutes Retail Experience Sub-committee Actions Conduct Committee minutes CONCLUSION This Statement demonstrates how : complies with the PSED across its functions ensures that its policies and practices further the aims of the PSED ensures that equality implications are fully considered when making decisions and formulating policies and practices Leadership and commitment at all levels are central to success and is committed to ensuring that we take account of our stakeholders views, and that we drive forward progress on the development of specific equality objectives that will identify the priorities for action on equality. welcomes your comments or suggestions on how we might improve the Statement. Please contact us at 5

6 Appendix 1: Internal Diversity Employment Data Employees in Post as at 31 January 2016 Job Band White Non- White Not Disclosed Pay band 1, 2 and Pay band Pay band Pay band Pay band 6 and Grand % of Grand 62% 17% 21% 100% Job Band Female Male Not Disclosed Pay band1, 2 and Pay band Pay band Pay band Pay band 6 and Grand % of Grand 48% 52% 0% 100% Job Band Disabled Non- Disabled Not Disclosed Pay band 1, 2 and Pay band Pay band Pay band Pay band 6 and Grand % of Grand 2% 98% 0% 100% 6

7 Job Band Pay band 1,2 and Full time Part time Pay band Pay band Pay band Pay band 6 and Grand % of Grand 93% 7% 100% Job Band < >60 Pay band 1,2 and Pay band Pay band Pay band Pay band 6 and Grand % of Grand 0% 9% 22% 36% 27% 6% 100% 7

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