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CQC to address staff concerns over diversity in workforce

by Jess Hacker
9 August 2021

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The Care Quality Commission (CQC) will monitor how ethnicity and ability are represented in its workforce, after less than half of staff agreed the regulator is ‘actively building diverse teams’.

In its new business plan for 2021-24, published last week, the CQC set out its objective to develop a ‘diverse CQC workforce with equal opportunities’ for everyone and a culture of inclusion.

To achieve this measure, it said it would monitor workforce representation compared to the economically active population, based on ethnicity and disability. It also laid out targets to improve its baselines for both groups (9% and 13% respectively).

The objective comes nearly a year after the ,(September 2020) with staff surveyed on the CQC’s diversity plans in a survey.

In another staff  survey (March 2021), called their pulse survey, only 45% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that the CQC is ‘actively building diverse teams that reflect the communities we serve’.

Similarly, less than half (48%) agreed that the CQC ‘provides equal opportunities for career progression or promotion’.

However, a significantly greater number of staff (77%) agreed that the CQC promotes equality, diversity and human rights in all of its work.

The refreshed business plan is intended to support its new strategy, published at the end of May, which sees greater focus on assessing local systems’ ability to reduce inequalities.

Accountability and safeguarding

The CQC in total published 12 objectives as part of its new business plan to transform the way it regulates services and supports its staff, including how it responds to whistleblowing and safeguarding concerns.

It said it will aim to increase the ‘volume of people giving us feedback on their care’ and will ‘monitor the percentage of services that say they are confident’ the CQC uses the experiences of people effectively in its regulation and judgements.

It added that it will ‘use enforcement when we need to keep people safe and to hold those responsible to account’, however the measures for achieving this have not yet been determined.

The regulator also committed to improving the way it inspects services which provide care for people with learning disabilities and autism, with greater focus on monitoring the variance between these services.

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