TUC Diploma in Equalities

The Diploma is designed primarily for experienced Trade Union Reps whose role would benefit from a wider understanding of Equality Issues. It is intended to help students understand equality issues in the workplace, current equality legislation and how it can be applied in their own organisation.

Who is the course for?

The course is designed specifically for experienced trade union representatives whose role would benefit from a wider understanding of equality issues. The Diploma also develops values and skills needed for higher level study and activism.

How long is the course?

This course is delivered over 36 weeks.

What will the course help me to do?

The course will help you:

  • become more effective as a union representative, particular on equality issues
  • promote an understanding of trade union values and policies on equalities
  • deepen and extend the capacities of learners enabling them to apply for full-time officer posts or higher education opportunities
  • strengthen understanding of trade union and workplace issues and offer up-to-date detail of new developments in the law and policy
  • build learners' knowledge of equality issues in the workplace
  • support learners' ability to build workplace equality and tackle issues at work
  • develop personal/study skills, the ability to work collectively, and generally improve the confidence of learners to study at a higher level

What subjects are studied?

The Diploma is accredited by the NOCN and is divided into several units - three core units and four study skills units - see below.

Equality issues at work

This module focuses on three main topics: different equalities themes; union and workplace policies and practices; and using trade union values to build the case for equality.

This module will help you to understand:

  • the workplace in equality terms
  • different equalities themes and protected characteristics
  • union and workplace equalities and practices
  • trade union principles of equality

Equality and the law

This module focuses on two main topics: UK equality legislation and UK institutions and procedures for equality.

This module will help you to understand:

  • the context for legislation on equality
  • current UK equality law
  • equality legislation and how it impacts on the workplace
  • UK institutions that deal with equality
  • procedures that can be used in equality cases

Working for equality

This module focuses on three main topics: equality theory and practice.

The module will help you to understand:

  • differences in the theory and practice of equality
  • development of equality policies
  • the use and value of equality tools
  • union structures and strategies in working for equality
  • the equality bargaining and campaigning agenda.

Study Skills Units

The study skills units comprise of:

Communication & Study Skills

  • read and respond to written materials
  • produce written materials
  • prepare and make a presentation to a group
  • take part in discussions and work collectively

Legal skills

  • legal reasoning in case law
  • locating and using legal resources
  • using the law in negotiating
  • employment tribunal preparation

Information Communication Technology

  • prepare and input data
  • display and present information
  • present data
  • use database, word processing and spreadsheet applications

Research Project

  • project planning
  • research skills
  • presenting the project

What are the entry requirements?

Union representatives who wish to take this course should have:

  • previously attended an Equalities Award programme or the Union Reps Stage 1 and Empoyment Law Certificates programme; or
  • achieved a suitable equivalent to the above through their own union's courses or from elsewhere.

What qualifications are awarded?

To achieve the Equalities for Trade Union Reps Diploma participants are required to:

  • successfully complete all seven modules
  • gain a total of 48 credits (27 credits from subject modules and Level 3, 21 credits from study skills modules at Level 2 or 3)

Can I get time off to learn?

Union representatives who wish to attend TUC courses in working time should first ask their employer for time off with pay. The Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 and the Safety Representatives and Safety Committee Regulations 1977 give accredited union and safety representatives a legal right to reasonable time off with pay to attend courses approved by the TUC or their union. Guidance towards establishing what constitutes reasonable time off can be found in the ACAS Code of Practice.

Representatives who find difficulty in obtaining paid time off to attend TUC courses should seek assistance from their senior union representative or full time union officer.

How much is the course?

There are no course fees for union reps from TUC affiliated unions.

Further information

For further information, please contact your TUC Education Officer.

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