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What is an Equality Impact Assessment?

An Equality Impact Assessment (EIA) is a tool that helps the University make sure that our policies, procedures and practices do what they are intended to and are inclusive for all staff, students and visitors.

Carrying out an EIA helps support good decision making.  It involves systematically assessing the actual or likely effects of our activities on people with the nine protected characteristics defined in the Equality Act 2010.  The protected characteristics are:

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender Reassignment
  • Marriage and Civil Partnership
  • Pregnancy and Maternity
  • Race
  • Religion or belief
  • Sex
  • Sexual Orientation

In addition, the University also treats Caring Responsibilities as a protected characteristic.

The EIA process includes looking for opportunities to promote equality as well as identifying possible negative adverse impacts which can be removed or mitigated.  If any adverse impacts amount to unlawful discrimination, they must be removed.

EIAs help the University to fulfil its commitments set out in the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy

The process is summarised in this flowchart:  EIA process flowchart (Word document)

The Screening Process

Most new policies or procedures will need an EIA carrying out.  If a policy is changed or revised an EIA will also normally be needed.  If you are not sure whether an EIA is necessary, the screening form will help you to decide.

The EIA Screening Form (Word document)

The EIA form

The EIA form is the space for you to record everything you have done to assess the impact of your policy.  It also helps you to develop an action plan to remove or mitigate any adverse impacts you identify.

The EIA Form (Word document)

EIA Guidance

A full EIA guidance document is available to help you to carry out an EIA as effectively as possible.  A glossary of key terms and legal definitions is also available.

EIA Guidance (Word document)

Glossary and Definitions (Word document)

Completed Equality Impact Assessments

Examples of completed Equality Impact Assessment forms are the Working from home EIA and the Returning to campus phase 1 EIA.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The University conducts Equality Impact Assessments on their policies and procedures for selecting staff for the Research Excellence Framework, to ensure that the selection processes are fair and transparent and to ensure that the University fulfils its obligations to promote good equality practice.