"an alliance of BME networks and public service agencies dedicated to promoting fair services free of racial discrimination."

About Us

The Health & Social Care BME Network was established as:

“An alliance of BME networks and public service agencies dedicated to promoting fair services free of racial discrimination."

The Network's core membership consists of BME professionals who are well placed to articulate the concerns of BME staff, Patients and Service users in order to ensure that the public sector delivers quality services that meet the needs of BME communities.

The HSC BME Network was launched at the Care Quality Commission 28th October 2011 during Black History Month.

Why do we need an HSC BME Network?

Following the publication of the Stephen Lawrence report the Government passed the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 which places a legal obligation on all public sector bodies to promote race equality.

Sadly more than 10 years later an unprecedented number of reviews have highlighted the failure of the public sector bodies to deliver on their Race Equality Duties to the detriment of BME staff, patients and service users.

The Network recognises the fact that BME people need to take control of their own destiny, but also appreciates that the most effective way to deliver this important agenda is for BME people, senior managers, regulators and all relevant stakeholders to work together in the true spirit of partnership. The Network therefore highlights what stakeholders can expect from these partnerships in order to change the status quo.

The HSC BME Network is an independent National voice for BME people to ensure the Health & Social Care sector delivers on its Race Equality Duty. As the beneficiaries and customers of the Duty, BME people are best placed to assist public sector in this way.

What are the Priorities for the HSC BME Network?

The priorities for the Network are:-

  • The HSC BME Network will seek to develop a Partnership Working arrangements with regulatory bodies to ensure effective regulation and inspection of Health and Social Care organisations. The aim will be to develop a minimum performance standard for public bodies to demonstrate progress in eliminating racial discrimination.
  • Promoting Race Equality
    The HSC BME Network will conduct evidence based Race Equality Performance Reviews to identify and promote good practice. The Network will support organisations that aspire to making improvements and benchmark their perfomance against best in class.
  • Commitment and Race Equality in the NHS
    The HSC BME Network will be strive to have race equality recognised as core business by Health & Social Care organisations and for senior leaders to commit to making available the necessary resources to make this happen. In addition CEOs will be asked to put in place a mechanism to ensure senior managers are competent to deliver the race agenda and to mentor future BME leaders.
  • Eliminating Discrimination in the Workplace
    The HSC BME Network will seek an end to harassment and intimidation of BME staff and will support victims through a network HR experts to support members who are under disciplinaries and grievance processes.
  • Delivering Quality Services to BME People
    The HSC BME Network support the effective delivery of quality healthcare services to local populations and seek to make explicit how the healthcare needs of BME people will be addressed and improved.
  • Developing Local Networks
    The HSC BME Network will support the development of local BME networks and empower their members once they are established. The HSC BME Network will also work with public service organisations to support and resource the establishment of local BME Networks as independent critical friends.
  • Developing Talent and Inspiring BME Leaders
    The HSC BME Network will promote positive action programmes to increase the number of BME staff in management positions and campaign to remove the barriers evident in the recruitment, development and promotion of BME staff.

2013/14 Priorities

The three main aims and objectives for the Network over the next 12 months will be to:

  • Extend the alliance nationally
  • Encourage and assist public service organisations to move toward good practice on race equality
  • Establish an effective support system for members experiencing discrimination, harassment and bullying

The Network will organise empowerment workshops for members and allied professional. This training will be undertaken by leading experts commissioned by the Network.

How will the Network be Governed?

The Network is a company limited by guarantee chaired by Dr Isaac John, who leads a Board made up of healthcare professionals. The Board is guided by a Governing Council Chaired by Surinder Sharma and made up of high profile individuals representing prominent public service bodies who are stakeholders in the unfolding agenda.

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