During October the Trust has been taking part in Freedom to Speak Up month. The theme is #FTSUforEveryone and we focused on the impact Freedom to Speak Up can bring for safety, civility and inclusion for everyone.
Speaking up enhances all our working lives and improves the quality and safety of care. Listening and acting upon matters raised means that Freedom to Speak Up will help us be a great place to work.
Speak Up Month in October has been an opportunity to raise awareness of how much we value speaking up in our organisation. There has been different themes for each week.
Week one focused on #SpeakUpforSafety - The safety of people who use and work in our services is core to how we work. The importance of speaking up about anything that gets in the way of you doing a good job, particularly relating to patient care and worker safety. Both Joanne Bennis, Chief Nurse and Callum Gardener, Chief Medical Officer, made a pledge to say how they were going to encourage staff to speak up.
Joanne said: “I pledge to encourage individuals to speak up by offering a psychologically safe environment to do so. Speaking up enhances working life and improves the quality and safety of care. I will pledge to listen and take action, promoting a culture where FTSU is common place and can thrive.”
Callum said: “I pledge to work tirelessly to ensure that staff of all grades and disciplines, medical or otherwise, feel able to raise their concerns with me; to always have an open door policy for all staff; and to ensure that I feedback to those raising a concern what actions have/are being taken, such that they always feel listened to.”
The theme for week two was #SpeakUpforCivility which means being kind to colleagues and not forgetting to be kind to yourself. Civility Saves Lives say that “Almost all excellence in healthcare is dependent on teams, and teams work best when all members feel safe and have a voice.”
Caroline Walker, Chief Executive Officer said: “I pledge to ensure the Executive and Senior Leadership are prioritising FTSU and ensuring all of their teams are responding to and learning from concerns raised.”
Then week three focus was #SpeakUpforInclusion which is all about promoting inclusion and breaking down the barriers we know exist to enable all workers to feel safe to speak up and be heard.
Louise Tibbert, Chief People Officer, said: “I pledge that I will always encourage staff to speak openly to me and will listen and then proactively follow up anything that is raised by them or the FTSU Guardian. Staff feeling able to speak up is fundamental to improving patient care and staff experience – a healthy culture is one where speaking up is respected and is the norm not the exception.”
The fourth and final week is themed #FTSUforEveryone which is about bringing all professions together, worker groups and sectors, both within health and social care and beyond. We want to make speaking up business as usual for everyone; regardless of job role, background or circumstance.
Steve Barnett, Trust Chairman, said: “As Chairman of the Trust, I pledge to ensure that the Board of Directors and Council of Governors continue to create a safe and supportive environment for all our staff to ‘Speak Up’ regardless of job role, background or circumstance.”
Board members making their pledges
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