Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service is committed to achieving equality throughout the organisation and across all of the services we provide. We are working towards a fully inclusive service, where equality of opportunity and valuing diversity are at the heart of everything we do.

We oppose all forms of unfair discrimination - on any grounds. We are committed to providing services that do not discriminate unfairly against any section of our communities, and encourage and support a diverse workforce that reflects those communities. We design our policies and work to help us achieve this goal.

The Social Model of Disability

The Equality Act 2010 defines disability as where; “…a person has a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”. Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service uses this definition in meeting our statutory and other official obligations. This definition is in line with the ‘medical model’ of disability, which sees disability as a ‘problem’ that belongs to the disabled person, and not as an issue of concern to anyone else. For example, if somebody who uses a wheelchair is unable to get into a building because of some steps, the medical model sees this as because of the wheelchair rather than the steps. In the medical model, in many cases disability can be ‘cured’ by medical intervention.

However, in Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service believes that disability is created by wider society disabling people by designing things to meet the needs of non-disabled people. This is known as the ‘social model’ of disability, and recognises that that society can do a great deal to reduce and eventually remove disabling barriers. The social model sees this as the responsibility of society, rather than of disabled people.

The social model of disability suggests that we will achieve equality for disabled people not by medical interventions or charity but by:

  • creating buildings that are accessible
  • producing information in accessible formats
  • challenging stereotypes and assumptions
  • ending segregated services
  • supporting disabled people to do things for themselves
  • ensuring that disabled people have full civil rights

Disability Confident Employer

Shropshire Fire & Rescue Service is committed to equality in the workplace. The service is a Disability Confident Employer accredited since 2017 (level 2 since 2019) and prior to that 'Two Ticks - Positive About Disabled People'. The Disability Confident scheme aims to help organisations successfully employ and retain disabled people and those with health conditions for their skills and talent. As a Disability Confident Employer the service is recognised as going the extra mile to make sure disabled people get a fair chance.

As a Disability Confident Employer the service has undertaken the Disability Confident self-assessment, is taking all of the core actions to be a Disability Confident Employer and is offering at least 1 activity to get the right people for the service and at least 1 activity to keep and develop our people. The service will always guarantee an interview for a person with a disability who meets the essential requirements of the job that are detailed in the person specification.

Useful links

Disability Confident Employer - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disability-confident-guidance...

Shropshire Disability Network 

Shropshire Disability Network (SDN) was formed in 2008 to provide a powerful collective voice for disabled people across Shropshire.

Further Information

Natalie Parkinson - Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Officer

Address: Brigade Headquarters, St Michael's St, Shrewsbury, SY1 2HJ.

Telephone: 01743 260 236

Email: natalie.parkinson@shropshirefire.gov.uk