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Building dignity: focus on rights and responsibilities Wendy Irwin Head of Equalities Royal College of Nursing.

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Presentation on theme: "Building dignity: focus on rights and responsibilities Wendy Irwin Head of Equalities Royal College of Nursing."— Presentation transcript:

1 Building dignity: focus on rights and responsibilities Wendy Irwin Head of Equalities Royal College of Nursing

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3 Too posh to wash, too clever to care? u The RCN Dignity Campaign was launched in 2008 as a response to some of the critical issues facing the nursing profession in the face of hospital acquired infections, abuse and neglect in care environment as well as the introduction of more stringent rules on accessing nursing as a career.

4 What it means u Providing dignity in care three key elements: respect, compassion and sensitivity. In practice, this means: u Respecting patients' and clients' diversity and cultural needs; their privacy - including protecting it as much as possible in large, open- plan hospital wards; and the decisions they make u Being compassionate when a patient or client and/or their relatives need emotional support, rather than just delivering technical nursing care u Demonstrating sensitivity to patients' and clients' needs, ensuring their comfort. u The RCN believes that every member of the nursing workforce should prioritise dignity in care, placing it at the heart of everything we do. Yet while dignity is clearly a vital component of care, the RCN is concerned that it is beginning to be lost. u When dignity is absent from care, people feel devalued, lacking control and comfort. They may also lack confidence, be unable to make decisions for themselves, and feel humiliated, embarrassed and ashamed.

5 Dignity Charters u Launched separately for RCN employees and RCN members in 2009 and 2010 respectively. u Focus on rights and corresponding responsibilities u Employee charter outlines the rights and responsibilities of all staff and has particular roles for managers which echoes the staff competency framework

6 Dignity Charter: members RCN members have the right to: be communicated with in an open, honest and transparent manner be spoken to politely, in a courteous and respectful manner not be stereotyped, labelled or subjected to discrimination be treated equitably and fairly have their confidentiality respected and preserved have their individuality recognised and their contribution acknowledged be given feedback in a supportive and respectful manner not be attacked personally (verbally or non-verbally) or insulted express their views and have those views listened to. RCN members have the responsibility to: communicate in an honest, polite, courteous and respectful manner not stereotype, label or subject people to discrimination value and respect other members and staff in all their diversity respect and preserve confidentiality acknowledge the contribution of others provide feedback in a supportive and respectful manner not attack anyone personally (verbally or non-verbally) or insult them respect and abide by organisational decisions and procedures.

7 Employee Dignity Charter The purpose of the Dignity Charter is to create a positive guide to encourage effective working relationships at all levels across the organisation. Clarify what constitutes appropriate or inappropriate behaviour. Develop constructive processes for informal and formal mediation. Reduce the potential for friction, conflict and complaints in relation to working relationships within the RCN.

8 Detail u The dignity charter for staff sets out expectations across seven areas AccountabilityMy organisation CommunityRespect and consideration DiversityWork-life balance Employee role

9 Diversity I have the right: u not be stereotyped or labelled u be treated equitably and fairly as a valued member of the team u work in an environment that is free from unlawful discrimination. u It is my responsibility to u treat everyone as an individual whilst recognising and respecting difference u recognise and challenge discrimination u be consistently fair in all my dealings and contact with people

10 Implementation u Consultation, consultation, consultation u Training and ongoing support of a cadre of Dignity Advocates across the UK u Finding common ground with existing employee voice mechanisms


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