As a public body, Acorn Multi Academy Trust complies with The Equality Act (2010), which protects individuals against direct and indirect discrimination, harassment and victimisation on the basis of nine protected characteristics.
The nine protected characteristics are:
- Age – not including under-18s
- Gender reassignment – including people who have proposed, started or completed a process to change their sex but who are not under medical supervision
- Marriage/civil partnership – not including those who are not married/in a civil partnership
- Pregnancy and maternity – defined as all stages of pregnancy and the 26 week period following the birth of a child
- Race - including caste, nationality, ethnicity, skin colour
- Religion or belief – including atheism or agnosticism
- Sex - a man or a woman
- Sexual orientation
The Equality Act (2010) consolidates and replaces all previous equalities legislation such as the Race Relations Act, Disability Discrimination Act and Sex Discrimination Act.
The Public Sector Equality Duty places additional duties on public sector organisations such as multi-academy trusts. The duties include working proactively to eliminate discrimination on the basis of the nine protected characteristics. The duties also require public bodies to have due regard to the need to:
- Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment, victimisation and other prohibited conduct under the Equality Act (2010)
- Advance equality of opportunity between people of different groups
- Foster good relations between people from different groups.
Acorn Multi Academy Trust is committed to adopting the aims of the PSED in all our schools and workplaces. The Public Sector Equality Duty introduces legislation in the form of specific duties. The duties require schools to:
- Publish information to demonstrate how they are complying with the PSED. This information must include, in particular, information relating to people who share a protected characteristic
- Prepare and publish equality objectives
The Trust has set Equality Objectives to support our compliance with the Public Sector Equality Duty. Our Equality Objectives help focus attention on our priority equality issues in order to deliver improvements in the delivery of high-quality education, policy making and employment.
The Trust's policies are designed to promote and ensure equality for all pupils and staff, and are underpinned by our overarching Equality Policy.
Staff benefits such as leave entitlements; support for parents and carers; career development opportunities and flexible working provisions are open to all staff irrespective of age, disability, gender, gender identity, marriage/civil partnership status, race, religion/belief or sexual orientation.
Our academies are committed to supporting and promoting inclusion for pupils. A key aim of the Trust and each of its academies is to help all pupils, including those with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, to achieve their very best and become successful, well rounded individuals.