Best practice for improving equalities

As part of our Equality Action Plan we've collated various RCPsych resources that illustrate best practice in addressing inequalities in mental health.

We concentrate on the four following protected characteristics as these groups of people are most likely to be discriminated against within the health sector:

  • Disability
  • Ethnicity/Race
  • Gender
  • Sexuality

The content below includes resources relating to racism and discrimination. This includes information for Black, Asian and minority ethnic as well as LGBTQ+ and disabled individuals. We'll continue to update this page with recommendations and resources.

If you have any recommendations to include here, please contact our team at

This collaborative is a fantastic opportunity for organisations to access expert support and guidance to tackle a difficult, but extremely important, area in the push for better mental health care for all.

Find out more about the AMHE Collaborative

Unfortunately, people who identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual are more likely to experience mental health needs in their lifetime.

We provide an information leaflet about feeling down, distressed, overwhelmed or hopeless, for anyone who feels like they are struggling or who thinks they may have depression.

Read our information on depression

Our Rehabilitation and Social Psychiatry Faculty provides links to several studies, including a review that examines the multiple and complex rehabilitation needs of women with serious mental illnesses.

Read about the studies

For many people with mental health problems and those with Learning Disabilities, being socially excluded is a real issue which affects their daily lives.

We have consistently highlighted the importance of social inclusion for people with mental health problems and with Learning Disabilities. 

Read about our work on social inclusion

We supported the need to ensure that people with mental health conditions and those with intellectual disabilities are given the opportunity to live full and satisfying lives, which may include the benefits of accessing and remaining in employment or engaging in other valued activities.

Read our response to the Green Paper

We published a position statement on improving the quality of mental healthcare in a way that respects and values the principles of diversity and inclusion.

Read our position statement on racism and mental health

Six in ten Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic psychiatrists have experienced racism at work. To help tackle this problem, the College has called for mandatory training that specifically covers the impact of unconscious bias on decision-making and structural inequalities for all mental health staff.

Read about our call

The College has warned that people from a Black, Asian or minority ethnic background face a “triple whammy” of blows to their mental health due to suffering disproportionately from COVID-19, the despair and hurt many people feel following the killing of George Floyd, and the ongoing institutional racism in the NHS.

Read our news article.

This blog post attempts to briefly summarise some useful information around bisexual mental health.

Read the blog post

The Quality Network for Learning Disability Services (QNLD) aims to support services to evaluate and improve their management processes and standards of care.

Read more about QNLD

In this blog post, one of our leads for race equality sends her love to the NHS on its 72nd birthday, with a heartfelt wish to address systemic racism.

Read the blog post

At the Royal College of Psychiatrists, we want everyone to feel included and empowered to bring their whole selves to work. One of the steps we’ve taken is introducing gender-neutral facilities wherever possible, across our offices.

Gender-neutral facilities are toilets and/or bathroom facilities that do not have gendered signage and do not require the person using the facilities to be of a particular gender. They can be used by anyone, regardless of gender, without fear of incident, discrimination, or harassment.

You can find inclusive facilities in most of our College offices. Where we provide gender-neutral facilities, we ensure employees are given a choice. We are in the process of rolling them out, where appropriate, to all sites. This is an area that, if we move or refurbish offices, at any location in the future, we will take strongly into consideration.

Read more to receive further information regarding a career in psychiatry