Staff, care providers and commissioners

Added on 14/07/2008
Updated on 18/11/2014

Staff at all levels from frontline workers to commissioners and performance managers can play their part to helping ensure dignity in care services.

10 ways staff can take action to promote Dignity in Care

1. Sign up as a Dignity Champion here.

2. Use the online Dignity in Care Practice Guide. The Department of Health and the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) have created an online resource (opens new window) to help support health and social care staff in delivering dignity in care. The guide has been designed for people who want to make a difference and improve standards of dignity in care. Whether you only have five minutes to get some quick ideas, or five hours to gain an in-depth understanding, this guide should meet your needs.

3. Share your good practice or dignity stories Most hospitals and care homes are funded on pretty much the same basis, all face similar challenging issues around staffing and time. Yet, some provide wonderful, truly dignified care and others do not. We need to unlock the secrets from those that do well and spread the word.

A key part of this campaign is about encouraging staff to share their good practice and stories of being a Dignity Champion to help inspire and equip others to follow suit or come up with their own ways of making a difference.

4. Quick Tips to making a difference

  • Wear your Dignity Champion badge so you can be identified by other champions and people in your organisation. Find out how to get your badge here
  • Use our dignity illustrations. There are many ways you can use these illustrations: as posters; in leaflets; in presentations; in staff meetings; in discussions with residents and staff
  • Download Dignity Cards and Becoming Dignity Champion Leaflets and share these with your colleagues and others in your organisation
  • Encourage at least one other person to sign up to the campaign and become a Dignity Champion
  • Ask your manager if you can discuss how your organisation provides dignity in care at your next team meeting. You could use the Dignity Challenge or the dignity illustrations to help prompt those discussions

5. Train yourself and your staff in dignity in care

It is easy to think that after years working as a care giver you know all there is to know about dignity in care but even experienced staff can get a lot out of dignity training. The powerful "What do you see", 10 minute DVD with Virginia McKenna is available for purchase at www.amandwaring.com. Many Dignity Champions have used this video with their staff and colleagues. See also SCIE's Social Care TV page (opens new window).

6. Attend local Dignity Champion workshops and events Various events are run locally in each region. These events bring you together with other Dignity Champions and will help equip you to take action in your role as Dignity Champion. Most events are free of charge.

It is important for Dignity Champions to take part in these events. Whilst you can make a difference as an individual - when you take action collectively you can become far more powerful and really make change happen.

Contact your local Dignity Champion Networks to get involved or start your own network.

7. Take on the Dignity Challenge Our 10 point Dignity Challenge has been widely used by organisations across the country to raise awareness and create a common understanding of what Dignity in Care means. You can download credit card sized Dignity Challenge cards and Dignity Challenge posters to distribute locally. See examples of how local organisations are using the Dignity Challenge here.

8. Create your own local network Many staff are already part of a professional network related to their job, profession or area or professional interests. Where possible we encourage staff and Dignity Champions to use their own local networks to raise the profile of this issue. We also recommend looking at how any networks you are involved in could play a role in promoting dignity in care more widely and encouraging members of your networks to join to the campaign. You can make up your own network of dignity champions by using our search facility to find champions in you area of with similar interests to yourself.

One you have a local network please make sure to add it to our network maps page.

9. Include dignity and respect in job descriptions and objectives for staff

This can be a powerful way or ensuring our organisation attracts and retains people with the right values and mindset. Ensuring dignity and respect are covered in induction and included in work objectives helps demonstrate how important these values are within your organisation enables managers to assess staff not just what they do in their job but also in how they go about it.

10. Make use of feedback

Feedback is a two-way process. You can make a difference by ensuring you take up opportunities to feedback your views on dignity in care e.g. through national and local consultations. Our monthly ebulletin and news section on this website bring to your attention any consultations on policy which may affect dignity in care.

PS. Don't Forget

You are a member of the public too- you could also do any of the things listed on the 10 things the public can do list.

As a member of staff you can do much more than what is on this page. Take a look at our Useful Resources section for inspiration. You can also contact your local regional lead who can help you promote dignity further. Take a look at the In your area pages for contact details. If there is no contact listed, contact us and we will put you in touch with somebody who can help.