Bi-Borough - comprising Westminster and the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea (RBKC) Councils - has come a long way in their Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) journey.

Progress has been influenced by Bi-Borough’s commitment to, and focus on, supporting their staff through systemic training and providing a safe space to build a lasting and authentic anti-racist workforce. Some of the key features of their approach to tackling racial disproportionality include:

  • Devising an anti-racist charter and set of practice standards
  • Reverse mentoring, enabling senior staff and leaders to learn from the workforce's lived experience
  • A task force to address the ethnicity pay gap, reducing inequalities
  • Diverse recruitment panels that aim to better represent all canidates; all recruitment managers are also trained in anti-racism
  • Developing cultural competency and curiosity, not making assumptions

Jackie Carribon recently took up a new role at RBKC after some time away. She is proud to see the steps that have been taken to address racial inequalities, and the impact that the work has had on Bi-Borough's culture so far.

"We are making real progress and the future really is bright, and as someone who has returned to the borough I can say that with confidence. This work is not a tick box exercise, it’s important for our workforce to feel safe to be authentic, to be themselves”

Jackie Carribon, Head of Social Work for Families, Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea

Nicky Crouch from Westminster Council echoed Jackie's thoughts, and enforced that an anti-racist practice is the responsibility of all leaders and staff regardless of their ethnicity. Nicky also notes Staff College's 'Leading In Colour - The fierce urgency of NOW!' as a fantastic tool for public sector leaders.

"I’ve been questioned why as a white woman I’m the right person to sponsor this conversation, but it can’t be incumbent of on our global majority colleagues to lead the conversation, we are all responsible for social change!"

Nicky Crouch, Director of Family Services, Westminster Council

Nicky and Jackie both highlight Bi-Borough's Case Audit Tool as a key part of their wider commitment to address disproportionality. It helps social workers to identify positive examples of anti-racist practice, as well as areas for further development. The tool encourages sensitivity through asking practitioners to reflect on the areas of both difference and similarity between them and the child/family they are working with. It assists staff to focus an additional lens on inclusivity, helping them feel confident to consider alternative narratives about difficulties and risks.

86% of staff across the bi-Borough are now systematically trained, highlighting their genuine commitment to building an anti-racist workforce. By addressing systemic barriers and promoting equality, diversity, and inclusion, they are paving the way for a brighter and more equitable culture for all staff.

View all of the current social work job opportunities in Westminster and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea