RCM and Turning the Tide group wins NHS Race Equality Award

on 18 November 2022 Midwifery Midwives RCM Race matters Equality and Diversity

The Turning the Tide Oversight Group, in collaboration with the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) took home the NHS Race Equality Award at this year’s Health Service Journal (HSJ) Awards for promoting equity in career development for Black, Asian and minority ethnic staff with its mentorship platform.  

Presenting the award, Dr Habib Naqvi MBE, Director of the NHS Race and Health Observatory, said: “The judges really liked the ideas presented and were excited to see what was next to come from this team.”

The award recognises the efforts and achievements in supporting Black, Asian and minority ethnic maternity staff with career opportunities and wellbeing support.

Starting from a report of maternity staff and women and families of colour during the pandemic, the Oversight Group has gone on to develop clinical fellow opportunities, an antiracism framework and a mentorship platform led by Black and brown midwives for midwives of colour.

Pioneering these initiatives has strengthened a positive culture of inclusive leadership across maternity services and contributed to heightened satisfaction and progression of maternity staff in relation to career development.

Jane Bekoe, RCM Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, said: “It is a great achievement to not only start the RCM mentoring platform work with the oversight group following the report recommendations and get it to the place it is, but to also be acknowledged and celebrated at the HSJ Awards for the important work by Turning the Tide.

“Systemic racism, discrimination and prejudice can have a serious impact on someone’s professional life as well as personal life. There is a dearth of senior leaders of colour in maternity right now and a real gap in the support available to Black, Asian and minority ethnic staff to develop in their careers. We wanted to bridge the gap with the mentoring platform.

“Everyone deserves a mentor. Someone to help you reach your full potential. Someone who will support you professionally and sometimes emotionally too. Most importantly, someone you can see yourself in. The mentoring platform helps career development, enhances skills and experience and widens networks so that staff can know how to reach the right people for advice and support.

“The collaboration between the RCM and Turning the Tide is making strides to challenge and change the culture in our services so that members experience real equity and equality but we want to reach more people and make a bigger network of support. We’re always looking for more mentors and mentees of colour and encourage our members to join the platform.”

If you or anyone you know is interested in joining the Turning the Tide mentoring platform, you can sign up or share the joining information here.

The HSJ Awards shine a light on the outstanding efforts and achievements delivered across the health sector. See full list of winners here.