Report from the National Dignity Council

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11 October 2012

Report from the National Dignity Council

By Dr Rekha Elaswarapu, Helping Hands Advisor

The National Dignity Council (formerly known as The Dignity Partnership Board) came into being in 2009. It exists to promote dignity in all settings including those providing health and social care; it supports dignity champions and shapes and influences the work of the Dignity Network. The Council comprises committed representatives and individuals drawn from a range of organisations, representing diverse groups and settings.

I have been representing Helping Hands on this national group which has membership from an enthusiastic group of representatives from various bodies including health and social care organisations and individuals with a passion for dignity in care.

At our last meeting in September we discussed how dignity can be embedded into daily lives. This discussion emanated from the Chair who narrated a conversation she had with a young frontline worker. The said worker was upset that while she tries her best to maintain dignity for people she cares for, she did not always behave the same way when she was not in the care setting.

I believe if dignity is not embedded in our daily behaviour the effects will be transferred to the care setting on a day when everything seems to be going wrong.

Assessing a person’s attitude and values are very important when recruiting live in carers. Helping Hands have a very clear message around ensuring all its carers have the necessary values and these are tested during the recruitment training.

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