Powerful blog from Arfan Hanif

Chair of the Forum Central Inclusion Working Group

‘Enough of the talking….time for practical action’

Like me, no doubt colleagues attend many meetings and forums where things like diversity, inclusion, health inequalities, racism etc… (I could go on!) are often reactive in nature responding to news events, inquiries, legislation, campaigns etc. I tend to switch off most of the time because I’m fatigued after over a quarter of a century of hearing the same things by the same decision makers recycled in the ‘System’ which may be served and portrayed in new fashionable language such as ‘transformation’ or ‘co-production’.

As a person of colour with personal experience of discriminatory health pathways I don’t have the luxury to get into intellectualised discussion, reacting to the latest campaign or just simply blaming the system. Leave that for armchair activists who have time to play that game. For me it’s always been simple and it’s all about taking very practical steps and personal responsibility which may not be not very exciting but has a huge impact based on my personal experience. It is in this light I have decided to Chair the Forum Central Inclusion Working Group and an opportunity to cut through the noise, window dressing and emotional baggage with little substance and sustainability.

So what are the simple practical things the Inclusion Working Group will consider? In very simple terms it will:
a) Get the data and intelligence right – it will provide tangible evidence and a sense of urgency
b) Act on the data and create an action plan which is resourced and co-produced
c) Be equipped with the knowledge and skills to make actions into outcomes
d) Involvement and engagement with all key stakeholders including staff
e) Put our money and time where our mouth is.

Diversity, Inclusion and Equality outcomes do not come for free or through fancy words it’s all about very practical steps and being business-like. If you wish to consider practical and tangible change then perhaps this group is for you. If you want a talking shop or a forum to vent all the ills of society, then please look elsewhere.

Arfan Hanif – Chair

Our next meeting is on Wednesday 13th April 1:30PM – 3:30PM via Zoom. It will focus on Equality Monitoring and Data Gathering.

We welcome and encourage new members to join us, ensuring that we fully represent our diverse sector and offer this opportunity for learning and sharing best practises as widely as possible.
Please email [email protected] to join the group.