Presentation on theme: "Good Relations & the Public Sector Equality Duty Chris Oswald Head of Policy & Comms EHRC Scotland February 13."— Presentation transcript:
Good Relations & the Public Sector Equality Duty Chris Oswald Head of Policy & Comms EHRC Scotland February 13.
The Context National Outcome 7 - “We have tackled the significant inequalities in Scottish society.” National Outcomes on employment, education, health, crime, older people, life chances and public services. Single Outcome Agreements The impact of the recession and demographic change Christie Commission – Reform of public services
Public Sector Equality Duty: purpose Take effective action on equality issues Make the right decision, first time round Develop better policies and practices, based on evidence Be more transparent, accessible and accountable Improve outcomes for all
General Equality Duty eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment, victimisation and any other conduct prohibited by the Act; advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it; and foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic, or not
Good Relations – General Duty unpacked....involves having due regard, in particular, to the need to— (a)tackle prejudice, and (b)promote understanding. Slide Number 5
General Equality Duty Single duty covering 8 of the protected characteristics – age, disability, gender, sexual orientation, race, religion and belief, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity It covers marriage and civil partnership in relation to the non-discrimination duty only Covers all “listed” public authorities Also covers all bodies carrying out a public function, in relation to that function A “public function” is one defined as such by the Human Rights Act 1998
Overview of Scottish specific duties Mainstreaming equality Equality outcomes Assessment and review Employment information Gender pay gap information Equal pay statement Procurement Scottish Ministers duty Publication duty
Equality Outcomes As a public authority, you must; publish a set of Equality Outcomes by 30/04/13 and every four years thereafter take reasonable steps to involve people with protected characteristics in preparing outcomes consider relevant evidence relating to protected characteristics publish reasons for not setting outcomes on individual protected groups publish a progress report by 30/4/15 and every two years thereafter
Equality Outcomes What they are not; Outputs Performing the other specific duties Making your services accessible About your services or functions
Equality Outcomes What they are; results that you aim to achieve in order to further one or more of the ‘needs’ of the general equality duty changes in the lives of people affected by what you do as a consequence of the actions you have taken
Equality Outcomes Partnerships General equality duty is held by the individual authority Does not extend to partnerships except in relation to the authorities partnership activities
Equality Outcomes Partnerships the most pressing issue of inequality may be one which can only be addressed through partnership partners may wish to confer on preparing outcomes and working jointly towards achieving progress accountability for equality outcomes rests with the individual body
Our approach Hands off – for those authorities who we believe are performing well Hand in hand – assisting those authorities who are struggling with issues such as using equalities evidence (see Improving Local Equality Data) Hands on – for the minority of cases where either the authority is not willing to make changes or to clarify areas of conflicting rights.
Monitoring Outcomes Major monitoring & reporting project planned Commences May 2013, looks at all published outcomes from all 300 PA’s Identifies non compliant authorities Assesses the type and nature of published outcomes, by sector, evidence base, scope etc And reports to Scottish Parliament in Autumn Slide Number 14
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