Agenda item

Annual Equality Diversity and Inclusion Report 2022-23

To consider the report of the Cabinet Member for Communities and Neighbourhoods updating Members on the work City Council Officers have undertaken regarding equalities, as well as the work the Equality and Diversity Working Group has completed over the last year.


122.1  The Cabinet Member for Communities and Neighbourhoods introduced the report. He confirmed that the administration was committed to upholding the Equality Act 2010, noting that equalities, diversity and inclusion (ED&I) objectives had been embedded into the Council Plan, and that the council was reviewing and approving a new Action Plan for ED&I in 2023. The Cabinet Member for Communities and Neighbourhoods further highlighted that various initiatives to tackle inequalities had taken place across the Council and throughout the city over 2022.


122.2  The Chair referred to the 2022 Awareness Days Calendar at Appendix 2 and requested clarification on the ‘IDAHOBIT’ acronym. The Policy and Development Officer explained that this referred to ‘International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Intersex-phobia and Transphobia.’


 122.3 In response to an additional query from the Chair regarding the Awareness Days Calendar, the Policy and Development Officer confirmed that the main aim of the calendar was to raise awareness and that he along with the Community Wellbeing Team compiled the list. He noted that awareness days could be marked through small campaigns, internal City Council newsletters or civic events.


122.4  The Chair asked whether the awareness days were promoted on the City Council’s social media channels. The Policy and Development Officer confirmed that the Community Wellbeing and Communications teams did promote awareness days on the City Council’s Twitter, Facebook and Linked- In webpages. He confirmed that the council did not use TikTok or Instagram at this stage.


122.5  Councillor Pullen reflected on his experience of attending the recent Holocaust Memorial service which he found to be an impressive and sobering event and asked that his comments be fed back to the event organisers.


122.6  Referring to the narrative in Appendix 1 and the council’s commitment to ensure that 95% of staff and Councillors receive training in ED&I by March 2024, Councillor Pullen asked whether this training was likely to be delivered in-house of by external organisations. He also asked whether the council planned to make this training mandatory. The Head of Culture confirmed that the council had committed money from the training budget towards ED&I training and that it would likely be a combination of in-house and external providers. He provided reassurances that the council as an employer was committed to ensuring that staff were appropriately trained in this area. Referring to the revised SMART goals in Appendix 1, the Policy and Development Officer confirmed that the council hoped to follow the approach of the Gloucester City Commission to Review Race Relations in engaging with local communities and was committed to working with community partners. He noted that consideration was being given to hiring translators.


122.7  In response to a query from Councillor Wilson regarding People Impact Assessments (PIA) and whether this was a statutory obligation, the Policy and Development Officer explained that a PIA screening process needed to be completed for every City Council report which considered the impact on protected characteristics. He noted that if any protected characteristics were identified, then a full PIA would be required.


122.8  In response to additional queries from Councillor Wilson regarding PIAs, the Policy and Development Officer confirmed that the screening process was a routine element of report writing and that work had taken place to increase awareness amongst Officers.


          RESOLVED – That the Overview and Scrutiny Committee NOTE the report.


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