AIMS' Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity Statement

AIMS' Mission

We support all maternity service users to navigate the system as it exists, and campaign for a system which truly meets the needs of all.

AIMS promotes equality, values diversity and challenges discrimination.

Equality is ensuring that individuals or groups of individuals are not treated differently or less favourably dependent on their diversity.

Diversity is about taking account of the differences between people and groups of people and placing a positive value on those differences – these may include

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender and gender identity
  • Race, ethnicity and culture
  • Sexual identity
  • Religion and belief, moral and ethical values
  • Socio economic status
  • Political beliefs
  • Mental health

Inclusion is empowerment and involvement and gives the opportunity for the inherent worth and dignity of people to be recognised.

AIMS makes a commitment with this statement to promote equality, diversity and inclusivity for all irrespective of characteristics. AIMS will demonstrate this by:

  • Not discriminating against our staff, members, users or volunteers
  • Respecting diverse views
  • Ensuring that our practices are transparent and open to scrutiny
  • Working towards high standards to ensure that the diverse needs of our users are recognised and met.

Freedom of expression is fundamental to AIMS and we will endeavour to publish diverse voices and wide-ranging opinions.

AIMS will work towards ensuring that all our written works will be made available in a variety of formats to meet different needs and that the language is inclusive to all. AIMS will ensure that the telephone helpline and email helpline volunteers will be proactive in efforts to engage with users appropriately.

Pregnancy and Birth

AIMS exists to support all users of the maternity system. We are also a feminist organisation which recognises that birth is hugely affected in a negative way by the way that women are subjugated within our society. At the heart of all our services is the person giving birth, and usually this person is a woman. We passionately protect the rights of women to their own body autonomy, and as the only person who is legally and morally able to make decisions about her pregnancy and birth.

We recognise that some people who are pregnant are not women. They may be men, non-binary or something else. We passionately wish to support the rights of pregnant people who are not women to their own bodily autonomy too. We know how much language matters, and it matters here, too. Getting the language right for trans people changes the environment they live in. We are trying out changing some of our language to reflect this, and we are continuing to commission articles about the experiences of pregnant and birthing trans men and non-binary people. We believe the empowerment of pregnant women can co-exist with supportive care for trans people.

We recognise that the experience of those from the black and ethnic minority in the maternity services is significantly worse as shown in the rates of maternal mortality. In addition, the ‘normal’ female body is based on white western women, not those from black and ethnic minorities. AIMS commits to work to bring this discrimination to the attention of the birthing world whenever possible.

We recognise that the experience of those with different types of disability, sensory impairment, mental health disabilities, and learning disability generally have less choice about labour and birth and are least likely to report a positive experience of maternity care. AIMS commits to work to bring this discrimination to the attention of the birthing world whenever possible.

We recognise that people can be stereotyped, stigmatised and discriminated against in the maternity services based on their relationship and marital status. AIMS is committed to fairness and equal treatment of all pregnant people regardless of marital status. We recognise that there are many family forms, and that the maternity services should recognise and support healthy relationships in all their diversity. AIMS commits to work to bring this discrimination to the attention of the birthing world whenever possible.

AIMS wishes to support all women and people who are pregnant, ensuring that all who birth are protected, included, celebrated, and retain their autonomy over their bodies.

If you have any comments on this statement, please email enquiries@aims.org.uk

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