Skills for Care has published a report detailing the latest findings of the Social Care Workforce Race Equality Standard (SC-WRES).

The SC-WRES is an improvement programme which has been designed for social care organisations to achieve anti-racist workplaces. It comprises of nine benchmarks which organisations can use to measure the experiences of people from minoritised ethnic backgrounds, develop action plans from the findings and make improvements.

The SC-WRES draws on a clear improvement methodology that’s been well-tested in the NHS and adapted for social care, and sets the direction to achieve meaningful and sustainable organisational change.

This latest report uses data collected from 23 local authorities between September to November 2023. The data collected about minoritised ethnic colleagues was compared with the data about white staff.

This information was then used by the local authorities to create action plans to address what emerged with short, medium, and long-term measurable goals.

Key headlines from the report suggest that overall staff from ethnic minorities are more likely to experience a disadvantage across most of the SC-WRES indicators compared to their white colleagues.

The data found that compared to staff from a white background, staff from a Black, Asian and minoritised ethnic background, in the last 12 months, were:

  • half as likely to be appointed from a shortlisting;
  • 40% more likely to enter the formal disciplinary process;
  • more than twice as likely as a regulated professional to enter the fitness-to-practice process;
  • 20% more likely to have experienced harassment, bullying, or abuse from people who use social care, relatives, or the public;
  • 30% more likely as a colleague and 90% more likely as a manager to have experienced harassment, bullying or abuse from colleagues and managers.

There was also a smaller proportion of staff from a Black, Asian and minoritised ethnic background in the senior management compared to the overall workforce.

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Oonagh Smyth, CEO, Skills for Care, says:

The social care workforce is one of the most ethnically diverse in England, where ethnic minority staff make up 23% of the workforce, making it more diverse than the overall population.

Yet we know from multiple reports that experiences of people from ethnic minoritised backgrounds working in social care are not always positive, and we know from our own data that the diversity of the workforce isn’t reflected at a senior level.

The SC-WRES is a vital step forward in making measurable and authentic change, and I’m proud that Skills for Care will be leading on the next steps of this important work.

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