Equality and diversity policy
Our policy on including everyone - whatever their faith, race, culture, nationality or sexual orientation
Approved: 10 June 2019
Content owner: Growth and insight
We're part of a global youth movement that celebrates diversity and is committed to equality and respect for all our members and potential members.
Our vision is an equal world where all girls can make a positive difference, be happy, safe and fulfil their potential. To achieve this vision we hold ourselves, those acting on our behalf and our members to high standards of conduct. This includes treating all young members and volunteers fairly, with respect and with dignity.
Girlguiding’s policies and supporting information provide a structure in which guiding can take place safely, consistently, and in accordance with the law.
Our Equality and diversity policy must be followed by all our members and volunteers.
Girlguiding aims to be an equal opportunities provider of services and association of members.
Protecting our members
No Girlguiding young member or volunteer should be disadvantaged by unjustifiable conditions or requirements, or experience less-favourable treatment because of any of the protected characteristics of the Equality Act 2010:
- Ethnic origin, nationality (or statelessness) or race
- Age (18+)
- Disability, including mental health
- Religion or belief, including the absence of belief
- Marital or civil partnership status
- Sexual orientation
- Pregnancy and maternity
- Gender reassignment
- Sex (except that Girlguiding is a girl-only space)
- Class or socio-economic status
- Political belief
- Being a carer
The list above also includes when someone is treated unfavourably because others believe they are a member of a group even if they are not, or if they are treated poorly due to friends, family, or other people they know being a member of one of these groups.
Upholding this policy
Girlguiding exists to support girls and young women, helping them to develop and fulfil their potential. A key way of achieving our mission and vision is by providing a girl-only space and having women as role models for our young members.
Girlguiding's girl-only offer is permitted under the Equality Act 2010, and some leadership positions in Girlguiding are only open to women.
We’re committed to extending guiding, its purpose and method to girls and young women in all parts of society.
Our members have an individual responsibility to fulfil this policy and work towards our vision of ensuring all can fulfil their potential. No one involved in guiding should behave towards someone in a way that violates their dignity, or creates a degrading, humiliating, hostile, intimidating or offensive environment.
Anyone who raises a concern or challenges discrimination will be supported. No one will be treated differently because they have sought to promote equality or challenge discrimination.
All Girlguiding volunteers are required to behave in accordance with the Equality and diversity policy. To carry out its work, Girlguiding seeks to appoint effective and appropriate volunteer leaders, and to involve other volunteers in a range of supporting roles.
This helps us to fulfil our legal obligations to ensure non-discrimination and ensures we foster good relations between different people and uphold the values which help us achieve our vision.
The overriding consideration in making volunteer appointments in Girlguiding shall be the safety and security of young people, and their continued development in accordance with the mission and values of Girlguiding.
Accordingly, all those whom Girlguiding accepts as volunteers must be 'fit and proper' persons to undertake the duties of the position to which they have been appointed, within the constraints imposed by the need for Girlguiding to ensure:
- The safety and security of young people
- The continued development of young people
- Equal opportunities for all
This policy is reinforced by additional supporting information and guidance that is linked below.
Supporting information and guidance
We provide resources and support for adult volunteers to enable them to include all girls and young women and give them a great guiding experience.
Our including all pages contain further information on supporting inclusion in Girlguiding, check these pages for information on:
- Disability and additional needs
- Reasonable adjustments
- Challenging behaviour
- Supporting trans members
- Religious differences and guiding
- Stateless young people, refugees and asylum seekers
- Lesbian, gay and bisexual members
- Maternity, pregnancy and adoption
- Mental health
- Young carers and carers
- Members living in poverty