The tragic and unnecessary death of George Floyd in the US, combined with the awful consequences of coronavirus, has prompted many of us to reflect long and hard about inequalities, discrimination and injustice. This incident has been a catalyst for change in the US and around the world, prompting us to have open and honest dialogue. Recent events have put a spotlight on insights gained from our recent webinar with Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) colleagues, including the disproportionate impact of COVID-19.

We have much to think about and act upon if we are to seriously challenge the economic, social and health inequalities that exist within our society. If we are not asking ourselves difficult questions, if we are not seeking opportunities to educate ourselves, if we are not engaging with intent to listen and change then we are not serious about wanting to end the racism and inequality around us.

Racism has no place in our organisation, in our NHS or in our society. One of our greatest strengths is our diversity, and we are proud that our organisation reflects the diversity of the communities we serve as well as the patients whose lives we strive to improve. We are on a journey to further improve our Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) indicators. Our action plan for the year ahead will build on and maintain our progress, weaving equality, diversity and inclusion through all we do at NEL CSU.

In addition to delivering on the commitments we have already made, we will do more by looking out for each other and seeking to influence those around us when we see or hear behaviours that don’t align with our values. It is our responsibility to help create an environment where everyone feels safe, valued and supported.

Black Lives Matter. In our organisation, in our family that is NEL CSU we want all our people and our stakeholders to know and experience that.