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2023 AGM - Agenda Item (g)

The consideration of and taking of decisions on any duly notified proposals for the adoption of any new Policies or the amendment or revocation of any existing policies

Update to Company Manual – Appendix IV-F-1 Equality Policy approved 19/01/2017


Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy – Supporting statement

Mountaineering Scotland believes that everyone has the right to take part in hill walking, climbing, mountaineering and ski touring, no matter what their background, beliefs, or level of experience. Everyone has the right to be treated with dignity, fairness and respect. As the representative organisation for hillwalkers, mountaineers, climbers and the ski touring community, we want to ensure we act inclusively, and properly represent the diversity of our members, volunteers, staff and Directors.

The current Equality Policy was approved by the Board of Mountaineering Scotland in January 2017, following the adoption of the Strategic Plan 2017 – 21. This plan embedded our organisational aims, actions and targets relating to equality in strategic and operational plans. A new strategic framework was adopted by the Board on 5 May 2022. This included updated aims and outcomes relating to equality, diversity, and inclusion and identified a need to review and update the current policy.

A key objective of the review was to provide support to clubs in meeting their legal obligations under the Equality Act (2010). The Act states that private clubs, and associations of over 25 members have a legal responsibility to ensure that members, associates, and guests are treated equally and do not experience any form of discrimination, harassment, or victimisation, because of a protected characteristic. This revised policy, now called the “Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (“EDI”) Policy, sits alongside the development of additional guidance for clubs which includes an updated constitution and a template code of conduct and complaints handling procedure. These guidance documents are available here

Following the formal consultation on the revised EDI policy held between 14 September and 4 October 2022, we received additional feedback and questions from several clubs about the revised policy. It was not possible to properly consider and address these in time for the vote at the 2022 AGM. Accordingly, the difficult decision was taken to withdraw the policy from the vote.

A second member consultation took place between 15 December 2022 and 27 January 2023, providing a further opportunity for members and clubs to review and comment on the revised policy. We also sought the views of our ED&I Network during the consultation process and thank them for their specific contribution. All comments and feedback were collated and addressed as part of the review process in an updated draft document.

The updated version of the revised EDI policy was circulated to member clubs and an online call took place on 20 February 2023. Further feedback during and following that meeting has also been incorporated into the final version of the policy.

Due to operational and business demands on time and resource we are moving this forward later than originally planned. 

The final version of the document was approved by the Board on 24 August 2023 for approval at the 2023 AGM - click link below to download a copy of the draft policy.

In proposing this update to the current policy, the Board’s intention is to ensure that adequate provision is made to protect our individual and club members against inappropriate behaviour, and to assist our clubs in meeting their legal obligations as set out in the Equality Act. 

Supporting papers and reports