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Our values

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Our values

Our values and behaviours define us. Our values represent what the city council stands for, with the behaviours translating into day-to-day actions. They aren't just a set of “words” which are kept in the top drawer, our values are for everyone working here at the city council, no matter what your role, they are something that we should all try to live by. 

They shape how we interact with the people we work with, our local communities and partners. Our Values represent what we believe in and who we aspire to be and provide a powerful articulation of our core beliefs and that through the application of our values we can build a better future. Our values are at the heart of our vision and success will be dependent upon everyone playing their part and doing what they can to help make the vision a reality.

Our values are; 

  • Empowerment: We will use our powers and resources, combined with the expertise of our dedicated workforce, to benefit the communities which we serve, enabling residents to shape more decisions about their lives and local environments.  
  • Openness: We will be clear about the challenges that the Council is facing, how we are going to address them and whether we are making progress. We will always be open to new and better ideas. 
  • Empathy: We care about the lives of our residents. We will provide help and support without judgement and will actively seek the views of our citizens to improve the services we deliver. 
  • Partnership: We will be dedicated and supportive partners to all those who want to make our city a better place, forging strong relationships which span sectors and geographies.  
  • Stewardship: We will take ownership of our commitments and responsibilities, be honest about where we can do better and demonstrate the utmost responsibility for the efficient use of public resources and assets.  
  • Representation: We will champion our city and our citizens at every opportunity, talking up its many strengths and nurturing civic pride. We will promote our city’s culture, heritage and future potential to wider audiences without downplaying the significance of local challenges.  

Cultural diversity

"Stoke-on-Trent’s cultural diversity is one of the main reasons that it is such a vibrant and unique city. As an employer, Stoke-on-Trent City Council is committed to advancing our equality and diversity objectives. We recognise the value a diverse workforce offers, and by embracing diversity we allow ourselves to recruit from the widest talent pool, encouraging innovation and high performance. We want the workforce to reflect the diversity of the city, to be an employer that all staff can be proud of. We are committed to creating a culture where staff are valued and supported, a culture that is truly inclusive."

-Jon Rouse CBE, City Director

Vibrancy and diversity are two of Stoke-on-Trent’s greatest assets. A city founded on creative endeavour should value and celebrate the multitude of voices, ideas and identities that shape its culture. We are committed to creating a culture which is truly inclusive, where all staff feel valued, listened to, supported and able to do their work to the best of their abilities at all times. And we must ensure that our decisions and policies nurture and empower communities across our city and do not inadvertently disadvantage groups and individuals that we want to help to thrive.

Our approach to Equality and Diversity is an invitation to all our communities to work with and for us so we can continue to improve how we deliver services residents need.

We are committed to being an inclusive employer and currently have the following staff networks in place:

  • LGBTQIA+ Network
  • Ethnically Diverse Staff Network
  • (dis)ability Network
  • Early Careers Network
  • Menopause Network


Our employee networks are inclusive, open forums for colleagues with similar lived experiences. They allow staff to meet, support and mentor each other, alongside being a voice for under-represented groups to advise and support the organisation when developing policies and services

Disability Confident

Stoke-on-Trent City Council is a level two disability confident employer, supporting people with disabilities in the workplace and providing relevant training to staff and managers. We have been working with registered charity Landau on how we can better meet the workplace needs of employees and job candidates with physical and learning disabilities. Stoke-on-Trent City Council has signed up to Landau’s ‘We See You’ workplace pledge, which is aimed at improving workplace diversity and inclusion in relation to people with disabilities. We are striving to become a level three disability confident employer and lead by example to support local employers to do the same for their employees.

Race at work Charter

We are pleased to share we are a signatory of the Business in the Community Race at Work Charter. We know that ethnic minorities still face significant disparities in employment and progression, and that is something we need to change. The Charter is composed of seven calls to action for leaders and organisations across all sectors. We signed up to taking practical steps to ensure we are tackling barriers that Black, Asian, Mixed Raced and other ethnically diverse colleagues face in recruitment and progression and that our organisation is representative of the community it serves.

Fostering Friendly

Stoke-on-Trent City Council is a Fostering Friendly employer, and in 2022 received the Fostering Friendly – Employer of the Year award. Fostering Friendly is a scheme created by The Fostering Network, the UK’s leading fostering charity. The scheme supports employers to implement a policy which promotes fostering and supports their foster carer employees. We have also been working hard over the last year to encourage major local employers to join in pledging support for children in care in the city.

Armed Forces Covenant

The city council has signed the Armed Forces Covenant and is committed to supporting Military Reservists and recognises the vital role that they play as part of UK Armed Forces. We also recognise the contribution that members of the armed forces community can make to our organisation. Our support as an employer for the Armed Forces has been recognised with a Ministry of Defence employer recognition scheme gold award.