It’s the tenth year of National Inclusion Week! This article explores what National Inclusion Week is all about, why it’s important and what we’re doing to increase inclusion at OAS. Let’s dive in…
So what is National Inclusion Week?
National Inclusion Week is a global celebration for organisations and individuals to celebrate and take action towards inclusion.
It was created by Inclusive Employers in 2012, with the original aim of encouraging organisations to think about inclusion and consider the benefits of having a diverse workforce. Today, inclusion is a hot topic and focus area for many organisations, and National Inclusion Week has become a milestone event in the Equality Diversity and Inclusion (ED&I) calendar – in 2021, over 60 million people connected to champion inclusion!
Why is National Inclusion Week important?
National Inclusion Week provides us all with a great opportunity to think about, learn and identify what we can all do to be more open and inclusive.
This year it’s taking place from Monday 26 September to Sunday 2 October with the theme ‘Time to Act: The Power of Now’, which reminds us to use National Inclusion Week as an opportunity to kick start embedding behaviours that will make inclusion an everyday reality.
Inclusive Employers’ Robert Moyne explains,
“We have been considering whether there are some of us who are instinctively inclusive and some of us who aren’t. We concluded that every single one of us needs to work on being more inclusive, none of us are perfect and we need to build deeper habits of inclusion.
“National Inclusion Week 2022 is the week to really crack on with developing and deepening this habit so that for the rest of the year, it gets easier and our workplaces get more and more inclusive.”
Taking positive action to increase inclusion
Here at OAS, we’ve been working hard to improve inclusive access to our apprenticeship and training programmes, as well as providing additional support throughout our activities so that our learners are included, empowered and supported to fulfil their potential.
‘Time to Act: The Power of Now’ is a great reflection of our proactive approach to increasing inclusion at OAS by taking meaningful action. We have already made practical changes to our policies, processes and operations in response to our specialist consultants’ feedback across three key areas of focus (mental health, disability, and neurodiversity), helping us to better include and support a wider demographic of people across our community. This year, as well as continuing work on these themes, we’ll be adding another three focal areas to the project: LGBTQI+, socioeconomic disadvantage, and young people who are Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET).
Additionally, as we welcome our latest group of apprentices into the training centres, this year we’ll be taking a more learner-led approach to ED&I, increasing our in-centre events, experiences and activities in line with issues apprentices tell us they are passionate about or areas where they’d like to increase their knowledge and understanding. We’re also inviting learners to take greater control of the organisation of these events, supporting additional skills development as well as encouraging them to take ownership of the OAS community’s culture.
Find out more
You can find out more about National Inclusion Week by visiting https://www.inclusiveemployers.co.uk/national-inclusion-week/
You can also sign up to attend some of Inclusive Employers’ online events and webinars such as:
28 September, 12.00-1.00pm (Book your place)