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Community Cohesion in Oldham Bruce Penhale Corporate Policy Manager Oldham MBC.

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Presentation on theme: "Community Cohesion in Oldham Bruce Penhale Corporate Policy Manager Oldham MBC."— Presentation transcript:

1 Community Cohesion in Oldham Bruce Penhale Corporate Policy Manager Oldham MBC


3 A cohesive community is a community: which is prosperous, and where everyone enjoys a good standard of living; to which people are proud to say they belong; where people from different ethnic, religious and social backgrounds and with different incomes live side-by-side in peace and safety; which is not disfigured by racism or other forms of prejudice, and where people treat each other with courtesy and respect; where people support each other when they are in need, and where conflicts can be resolved rather than festering or growing; where people receive, and feel they receive, fair treatment from organisations providing services, facilities and employment opportunities; and people are able to contribute to decisions which affect their lives, and to participate fully in the economic, social and cultural life of the community.

4 Community cohesion: not just a race issue Race Ethnicity (including intra-community issues) Nationality (including prejudice against asylum seekers) Religion (including Islamophobia) Different parts of Oldham – Identity – Perceived fairness in resource allocation Tensions between younger and older people Social class – links to patterns of tenure and affluence Other forms of prejudice – homophobia, exclusion of disabled people

5 Community Cohesion Policy development Developing Community Cohesion Strategy Central to this are: – Political and community leadership – Mainstreaming community cohesion by integrating it into all areas of activity – Building community involvement – New approach to regeneration This needs a good evidence base. The 2001 Census provides part of the baseline

6 Measuring community cohesion Thoughts and feelings Fairness Trust in institutions Relationships with other people in neighbourhoods Openness to other people Pride and identity Safety and security Behaviour Where people live Who they socialise with How they treat other people etc Experience of individuals, family and friends in: Labour market Schools Neighbourhoods Leisure Media etc

7 Ethnic group and religion

8 How has the composition of Oldham changed? Percentage of people from Black & Minority Ethnic groups – 1991: 9%, 2001: 14% Growth mainly in the communities of Pakistani and Bangladeshi ethnic origin Increase greatest in the areas with the largest BME populations in 1991 – Werneth ward 38% to 59% – Saddleworth West ward 1% to 1.7%

9 Has Oldham become more or less segregated? And how and why? Index of Dissimilarity – the percentage of the population who would have to move to be evenly distributed with respect to another group Calculated at ward level Range from 0 (= No segregation) to 100 (= fully segregated with respect to White people) 50*sum(abs((b i /B)-(w i /W i ))) Mixed Black Other Indian (63.3)(65.3) (All BME) Pakistani Bangladeshi



12 Measuring inequality using the 2001 Census Employment – economic activity, type of job, earners in household Learning – highest qualification Health – long-term limiting illness, health in the last year Housing – tenure, overcrowding

13 Standardised ratios of poor health in the last year (England=100)

14 Housing tenure by ethnic origin of household reference person

15 Unemployment rates by ethnic group

16 Ethnic origin and unmeasured variation White population is a large and diverse group Example of White people in Hollinwood ward (ranked in most deprived 5% on the Indices of Deprivation 2000) Standardised poor health ratios – For men 187 (131 for all men in Oldham) – For women 142 (133 for all women in Oldham) Ratios are comparable to those for Black & Minority Ethnic groups with poor health

17 Conclusions Value of the 2001 Census – Range of information – different issues, different spatial levels, comprehensive coverage, quality and comparability across areas and over time But: – Classifications of ethnic origin and religion may not be the most relevant for you – Only indirect measures of community cohesion – Care is needed in determining cause and effect – Differences that arent easy to measure may be important

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