Northern Trust launches good relations strategy

Alison Irwin, Head of Equality, Northern Trust; Pamela Montgomery, Non-Executive Director of the Northern Trust and Chair of the Equality Steering Group and Ivy Ridge, Project Director, Ballymena Inter-Ethnic Forum (Ballymena) INLT-08-701-con

Alison Irwin, Head of Equality, Northern Trust; Pamela Montgomery, Non-Executive Director of the Northern Trust and Chair of the Equality Steering Group and Ivy Ridge, Project Director, Ballymena Inter-Ethnic Forum (Ballymena) INLT-08-701-con

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The Northern Health and Social Care Trust recently launched its first Good Relations Strategy at the Stronger Together annual conference.

The strategy outlines the Northern Trust’s commitment to providing inclusive services to all communities and demonstrating to staff that they are valued and respected irrespective of their race, religion or political opinion.

It details how the Trust will promote respect, equity and trust in the delivery of its services and employment of its staff.

Non-Executive Director of the Northern Trust Pamela Montgomery, who is also Chair of the Equality Steering Group, commented: “Promoting good relations is not new to the Trust and much work has been done over the years to make sure that our services are accessible and staff feel comfortable at work.

“As a public authority we have a legal responsibility to promote good relations but this strategy is about more than following the letter of the law.

“It is important that the Trust is openly committed to promoting good relations and challenging sectarianism and racism.

“While developing the strategy we talked to our staff, service users and local communities to ensure their views were at the heart of this strategy.

“It is important that the Good Relations Strategy is relevant to the work we do and reflects the feedback we received.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who took the time to complete a questionnaire or to talk to us.

“Without your contribution, this strategy would not exist,” she concluded

A public statement on the Trust’s commitment to challenging sectarianism and racism in all its forms has been developed and will be displayed in all Northern Trust facilities.

The foreword to the Trust’s Good Relations Strategy states: “By developing this strategy we hope to make good relations a meaningful concept for service users and our staff.

“By working in partnership with other organisations we believe we can make a contribution to promoting good relations. This Strategy is supported and endorsed by Trust Board and we are committed to tackling sectarianism and racism in any form.”

A copy of the Good Relations Strategy can be found on the Trust website: www.northerntrust.hscni.net