Some groups in society who are vulnerable to social exclusion, experience disadvantage and discrimination are forgotten simply because not enough is known about their particular circumstances.
In tackling exclusion and inequality, and understanding the experience of different groups, there is a need for more frequent and comprehensive equality data. The services we commission have a big effect on the quality of life of the people of Birmingham and Solihull. What we do affects people today and also future generations. It is because of the significance and impact of what we do that we need to know who is benefitting from our services and which groups are missing out.
Using equality monitoring we are able to see who contacts us and recording their personal circumstances lets us analyse how well we are meeting our commitments to different groups of the community. Monitoring people by equalities groups is an essential tool in being able to identify inequalities. It enables us to take action to reduce and eliminate differences in uptake/representation/outcome experienced.
Without equalities monitoring we are lacking the diagnostic tool to be able to answer questions like: “Who is utilising our services?” and “What outcomes are different groups experiencing?” With this information we can plan the appropriate service developments and improvements that will close the gap for equalities groups. Equality monitoring provides evidence that services are reaching all sections of the community.
Asking for equality monitoring information
When you take part in surveys or meetings we may ask you for your personal details. This could include your age or ethnicity, for example.
We appreciate this is personal and sensitive information, and it may feel uncomfortable to provide this to us. We want reassure everyone who is involved in our work that we ask for this information to ensure that we are hearing from people from all walks of life and that the services the NHS commissions and delivers is meeting the needs of all of its population in Birmingham and Solihull.
The information we ask for could include:
- Ethnic origin
- Religion and belief
- Sexual orientation
Please rest assured you can always choose ‘prefer not to say’ if you do not wish to disclose personal information.