The BSPF shares views on why it has implemented an EDI policy and how it will be communicating the news.
Why have an Equity, Diversity and Inclusion policy?
The BSPF (British Swimming Pool Federation) is working with BISHTA, SPATA, PIP and SPATEX to fulfil its role to 'Promote Pools, Hot Tubs and Allied Wet Leisure'. Through the BSPF (and its members), having a unified voice, where applicable, for the wet leisure industry allows better dialogue with the government and other relevant organisations that impact our industry. It is then possible to ensure an effective communication system is in place to update the industry on upcoming issues. But just as crucial, the BSPF invites communication with its members (listed above), in the cases of BISHTA and SPATA, also with their members to help to improve and develop our industry through open dialogue with member companies through the work of the committees.
One such recent development is introducing an Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) policy, a strategic framework for organisations to adopt within their workplace or community to ensure fairness and inclusivity and that it is representative of all individuals regardless of their backgrounds.
There are many important reasons for having an EDI policy:
- Promoting Fairness and Equality: An EDI policy aims to eliminate discrimination, bias, and inequality within an organisation or community. It ensures everyone has an equal opportunity to succeed and thrive, regardless of race, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, or other characteristics.
- Attracting and Retaining Talent: Organisations prioritising equity, diversity, and inclusion tend to attract a more diverse talent pool. People from various backgrounds are likelier to join and remain with organisations that value their unique perspectives and contributions.
- Enhancing Innovation and Creativity: Diverse teams bring a wide range of experiences, viewpoints, and problem-solving approaches. This diversity of thought can lead to more innovative and creative solutions, fostering a dynamic and forward-thinking work environment.
- Improving Decision-Making: Inclusive environments encourage open dialogue and collaboration, leading to better decision-making. When making choices, diverse teams are more likely to consider various perspectives and potential outcomes.
- Reflecting the Broader Community: Organisations should mirror the diversity of the communities they serve. An EDI policy helps ensure the organisation's workforce represents its customer base, creating stronger connections and understanding between the two.
- Meeting Legal and Regulatory Requirements: Many jurisdictions have laws and regulations that require organisations to promote equity and prevent discrimination. Having an EDI policy demonstrates a commitment to compliance with these legal requirements.
- Enhancing Reputation: Organisations prioritising equity, diversity, and inclusion are often viewed more positively by customers, partners, investors, and the public. This can lead to improved brand reputation and increased stakeholder trust.
- Reducing Conflict and Improving Relationships: An inclusive environment helps reduce conflicts arising from misunderstandings and biases. It fosters respectful relationships among employees and can lead to improved collaboration and teamwork.
- Addressing Unconscious Bias: An EDI policy often includes training and awareness programs that help employees recognise and address their unconscious biases. This promotes a more inclusive and respectful workplace.
- Ethical and Moral Imperative: For many organisations, creating an equitable and inclusive environment is not only a business strategy but also an ethical responsibility. Treating all individuals fairly and respectfully is the right thing to do.
In summary, an EDI policy is essential for fostering a positive, inclusive, and equitable work environment that benefits individuals, organisations, and society as a whole. It goes beyond legal compliance and reflects a commitment to valuing and respecting all individuals' diverse experiences and perspectives.
The initial development of the BSPF policy has been due to the formation of a new EDI Working Group, with the first meeting taking place (online) on Thursday, 29th June 2023. Contributors included Amanda Goddard (AstralPool UK), Arun Sarna (Hot Tub Suppliers), Jon Herbert (Rockingham Pools) and Sallie Leslie-Golding (PIP, BISHTA and SPATA). The meeting was facilitated by Chris Hayes (BSPF - Managing Director). The BSPF is grateful for its staff and member companies' support and shared views at the first Working Group meeting.
The BSPF has now adopted their EDI policy as an organisation with support and feedback from the staff team in Andover Team: Jan Hardy, Claire Maguire, Jenna Patterson and Debbie Thornton. The policy has been shared with members of BISHTA and SPATA for their own use via the online Members Hub, with other related documents to follow as they become available, and to grow the Working Group and plan future meetings to progress with the work on EDI. The policy will also be shared with PIP and SPATEX for their support.
Members wishing to receive a copy of the EDI policy can contact the team in Andover; any member with their own EDI policy is encouraged to share it with their respective trade association.
Are you interested in being part of this EDI working group? Please get in touch with the BSPF office to register your interest and confirm any topics you would like to see on the agenda in future discussions. Please email: [email protected].