Quality, diversity, status
As Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care, one of my unwavering priorities is to improve the quality, diversity and status of adult social care (ASC) nursing. I want to ‘level up’ our nurses’ professional and personal experiences of social care, with their equally capable and dedicated colleagues in the NHS, where staff of all backgrounds, circumstances and aspirations have access to quality leadership development and support.
The announcement, earlier this year, of £500m to support workforce training, progression and wellbeing will give all those working in social care the opportunity to develop their skills and expertise, whether that’s providing skilled, high quality care and support, or moving into more senior roles as managers and leaders.
While all registered nurses (RNs) are expected to demonstrate leadership and act as role models, ASC nurses are often lead clinicians, responsible for people with complex needs, liaising with families, carers and leading staff across a range of teams and disciplines. They may also have additional responsibilities as operational or registered managers.
And while around a fifth of the adult social care workforce are from a black or minority ethnic background, this increases to 40% of nurses. Sadly, this diversity is not reflected at senior management and leadership level, with only 16% of registered or senior managers from a minority ethnic background.
Join the leaders of tomorrow
If we want our workforce to reflect the cultural and ethnic diversity of our communities, we need to make sure opportunities exist for everyone to develop and progress in social care.
That is why I’m pleased to be working with the Florence Nightingale Foundation to launch a leadership development programme specifically for nurses working in adult social care who come from black and ethnic minority backgrounds.
Based on the successful Windrush leadership programme for nurses in the NHS, participants will benefit from the Foundation’s reputation and expertise in delivering bespoke leadership development programmes for nurses and midwives, through a peer-to-peer learning environment to discover and explore personal leadership styles.
The programme will be offered to nurses in England from ethnic minority backgrounds who have been employed for three or more years in adult social care. More information, including how to apply, is available here.
I hope staff and employers will take this opportunity to challenge the lack of diversity in senior management and leadership roles and develop the next generation of leaders in social care.