We are committed to providing a supportive, non-judgemental and non-discriminatory working environment for all our colleagues.

We provide recruitment training for colleagues, which includes a section on ‘unconscious bias’, to ensure appointments are made on merit alone, and are free from prejudice.

Our induction process for new starters includes a dedicated module on esteem in the workplace, and our employee-led diversity networks promote a tolerant and enlightened outlook.

We provide workplace training for managers, to help them recognise and manage any instances of bullying, harassment or victimisation.

Our commitment to the Human Rights Act can be found in our annual report.

Business woman of th year2013/14 was another exceptionally busy year in the promotion of workplace diversity and equality.

To mark International Women’s Day, female employees spent an hour shadowing some of the most influential women in our business, including senior leaders and members of the Executive.

We also held a leadership day with the Army for 20 future female leaders and sponsored the North West Women in Business Awards.

Our approach to flexible working was updated, ahead of new workplace legislation which came into force in June. We took the opportunity to remind colleagues of our commitment to flexible working, to coincide with the legislative changes.

As participants in a Business in the Community campaign called ‘Race for Opportunity’, which helps employees to attract a more ethnically diverse workforce, we took part in annual benchmarking survey for the first time.

We recognise that we have more to do to establish a workforce that is more representative of the diversity within our region and we are committed to using the outputs of the survey to shape our approach.

If you would like to send us a comment about this report, please email our Head of Sustainability, Chris Matthews