Fair Treatment Ambassador Service
Volunteers in the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government created an innovative, holistic and comprehensive offer to address bullying, harassment and discrimination (BHD) through a new Fair Treatment Service. This delivers a departmental culture where everyone is treated fairly and has been embedded in MHCLG and emulated across Whitehall.
Whilst led by volunteers, quality is integral. Volunteer Ambassadors were provided with professional training by ACAS. For £2,500 (exceptional vfm) they secured understanding of equality law, active listening skills and personal resilience. To tackle capacity challenges, now in its second year, 10 new volunteer Ambassadors joined and 5 volunteer administrators.
The Ambassadors provide the first point of contact for anyone concerned about bullying, harassment or discrimination. They help individuals understand steps they might take, explaining referral options. All support is confidential and impartial. To maximise impact, Ambassadors also deliver interactive workshops, proactively targeting teams with high BHD People Survey Scores. Over 90 minutes, these promote awareness of the law and fair treatment in the workplace, and encourage pledges to deliver cultural change.
The Service is led by SCS volunteers, with workshops co-ordinated by Harriet Fisher and communications managed by Maxine McCleary-Jones, both volunteer Ambassadors. It is underpinned by materials developed, and action taken, by the Ambassadors and administrators including terms of reference, unique interactive workshop materials to create dynamic sessions, and monitoring to ensure quality.
All work is outside the scope of the ‘day job’, relying on the dedication of volunteer administrators and Ambassadors. They go over and above by committing approx. a day a month to the Service. The SCS volunteer leads also dedicate significant out of office time. This is a reflection of everyone’s passion to address bullying, harassment and discrimination: making MHCLG and the civil service a great place to work.