Equal opportunities statement and policy

1 Hertfordshire Chorus statement

1.1  Hertfordshire Chorus (HC) is committed to implementing and promoting equal opportunities in its activities, services and practice.

1.2  HC will not tolerate discrimination on the basis of:
i       race;
ii     colour;
iii    gender;
iv    sexual orientation or identity;
v     ethnic or national origin;
vi    disability;
vii   partnership status or home responsibility;
viii  age;
ix    political or religious belief;
x     socio-economic background.

1.3  HC accepts its responsibility to promote equal opportunities and to challenge discrimination wherever it occurs.

1.4  Every member of HC should be made aware of this policy and if they have been or are being discriminated against in any way they are entitled to pursue the matter with the Choir Council.

2 The management of the Chorus

2.1  HC will elect an executive Council elected from its whole membership.

2.2  Council meeting reports will be made available to all members.

2.3  HC will actively consult its members about major issues.

2.4  HC will actively invite members’ suggestions and comments and act on them as appropriate.

3  Charging policy

On behalf of HC the Council will annually review and publicise its membership fees in line with HC policy and changing needs.

4  Chorus members with physical disabilities

4.1  HC will endeavour to provide maximum access wherever practical for disabled Chorus members in all venues used for concert performance and rehearsals.

4.2  HC will research and respond to the special needs of members.

4.3  Disabled Chorus members will be required to meet the same vocal standards as all other Chorus members.

5 Harassment

No member should be subject to harassment which is interpreted as:

i  verbal abuse;
ii  physical abuse;
iii  repeated remarks which an individual finds offensive;
iv  written abuse by social media or any other medium.

6 Recruitment

6.1  Full membership of HC is through audition conducted by the Musical Director.

6.2  HC will make singing membership available to all people who have the required vocal ability. Any person over 18 will be eligible to audition for HC on their own behalf or any person under 18 with the permission of their parent or guardian.

7 Complaints and allegations

7.1  All instances or complaints of discriminatory behaviour will be treated seriously.

7.2  Complaints or allegations of an unfounded or malicious nature will also be treated as serious.

7.3  If a member of HC has a complaint or allegation this should be discussed with the Chair of HC, or where not appropriate, a nominated Council member.

7.4  If the complaint or allegation cannot be resolved as described above, it should be presented in writing to the Chair of HC, or where not appropriate, a nominated Council member, clearly stating the areas of concern.

8 Role of HC Council in responding to complaints and allegations

8.1  In the event of a complaint or allegation being presented as in 7(iv), the Chair of HC or, where not appropriate, a nominated Council member should discuss the matter further with the member concerned.

8.2  If discussions do not resolve the issues raised, the Chair or nominated council member should bring the matter to a sub group made up of three Council members (none of whom   is implicated in the allegation). The sub group should meet the member who can if they wish bring another adult to the meeting. This meeting must be held in private and all matters discussed should remain confidential.

8.3  The Chair or nominated council member must ensure that an accurate and detailed record is maintained of all events, discussions and outcomes. Such records should be stored in a secure place as agreed by Council and access to such records should only be on a need to know basis.

8.4  After due consideration the conclusions of the sub group will be reported back to the member concerned in the form of a written report which should be provided within ten working days where feasible, or if this is not possible giving a date by which the final response can be expected.

8.5  If the member who has made the complaint or allegation is not satisfied with the outcome of the review they should be advised to contact the Equal Opportunities Commission.

 

9  Point of contact

The Chair of HC is the designated point of contact  chairman@hertfordshirechorus.org.uk

10  Policy review

This policy should be reviewed annually.

Date Policy reviewed: 9 March 2021
Date of next review: March 2022

Policy approved by the Hertfordshire Chorus Council and signed by the Chair

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