Diversity happens! In 2003, the Independent Review of the Fire Service concluded that equality and diversity issues were still a major challenge for the Service. However, things are changing. The White Paper, "Our Fire and Rescue Service", has helped to give a new focus and direction.

Diversity Happens! (the programme board set up to give strategic guidance to the Service on equality and diversity issues) is leading the change to a more inclusive and fair organisation by:

* supporting the Service in developing its own set of core values;

* surveying to find out where the Service really is on equality and diversity issues;

* reviewing the race and gender employment targets; and

* reviewing equality training across the Service.

To support the Service, Acas (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) recently ran a series of seminars for HR practitioners on the implications of the legislation on sexual orientation and on religion, faith and belief, both of which came into force in December last year. …

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