Date: 19 April 2022
Blatchington Court Trust (BCT), along with other Visionary members supporting blind and partially sighted people across the UK, recognise the particular value of lived experience of sight loss within our workforce and leadership teams but we know we need to do better. We are committed to increasing the number of visually impaired people employed within the sector, at all levels including senior management where possible.
Fair and equal access to employment and professional development opportunities are a crucial part of our shared vision for an equal society. We acknowledge that the change we want to see has to start within our own sector, we must take the lead to challenge and change the inequalities that exist.
We recognise that lived experience of sight loss has not always been perceived or used as an asset in our sector. This is reflected in employment numbers of blind and partially sighted people which are significantly lower than might be expected. Our ambition is to create and accelerate significant change. By increasing the number of people with sight loss employed in the sector, we will become better at what we do and become an exemplar for other sectors.
As a collective, we are committing to the following actions:
We will attract more people to the sector by improving our recruitment processes, operational systems and working practices to ensure lived experience is recognised and highly valued.
We will share our experiences, resources and good practice across the Visionary network to ensure all organisations have access to learning and development. Where possible, we can also feed into the creation of a cross-sector specialist portal for potential employees.
We will ensure that people with lived experience have equal access to training and leadership opportunities within our organisation.
We aim to track our progress annually
Within Blatchington Court Trust, we commit to taking the following steps:
Maintaining our current level of at least 50% of all staff employed are vision impaired and are given equal access to all training and opportunities for progression into a management role.
Actively seek to provide opportunities for vision impaired individuals to gain work experience via an internship or similar scheme so as to increase future work opportunities either in the sight loss or main stream work sector.
By committing to this, we hope to achieve our shared ambition of greater representation of lived experience within the sight loss sector.