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Government Equalities Office: update Tim Morgan 5 December 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "Government Equalities Office: update Tim Morgan 5 December 2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 Government Equalities Office: update Tim Morgan 5 December 2012

2 New department, new Ministers GEO is now part of DCMS (since September 2012) Reporting to 3 Ministers: Secretary of State, Maria Miller MP (DCMS) Helen Grant MP (MoJ) Jo Swinson MP (BIS) GEO retains its name, branding, budget, and core responsibilities – Equality Act, EHRC, women, LGB&T

3 Equality Strategy: December 2010 Based on principles of equal treatment and equal opportunity Building an approach where equality is for everyone and is everyones responsibility GEOs work is grouped into 3 themes: Maximising womens contribution Changing culture and removing barriers Simplification, reform and support

4 A cross-Government approach Does not see equality in isolation from freedom, fairness and responsibility The Equality Strategy is one element in the Governments armoury to tackle disadvantage. It is complemented by: –Social Mobility Strategy –Child Poverty Strategy –Integration Strategy –Social Justice Strategy Inter-Ministerial Group on Equality –Meeting quarterly; chaired by Minister for Women and Equality with 12 Departments represented

5 The challenge: persistent problems Caring gaps: treatment of older people in our health service still worse than younger counterparts Gender pay gap – full time median gender pay gap is 9.6% Employment gaps: the employment rate for: all white individuals is 72% all ethnic minority groups is 60% Asian or Asian British women is 48% those with no long-term disability is 78% those with a disability 48% Talent gaps: too many institutions are pale, male and stale. Women make up 17% of FTSE 100 Boards, 22% of MPs, 26% of senior positions in the public and voluntary sector

6 What we have done: last 2 years Maximising Womens Contribution Women on Boards – 25%+ of new FTSE 100 appointments women; all male Boards halved; Think, Act, Report – encouraging larger organisations to help women overcome barriers in the workplace. Covers 10% of workforce; over 50 companies signed up including Tesco, IBM and BP. Annual report launched in November 2012 Womens access to finance – report published November 2012 Support for start ups -15,000 new mentors with 6,000 women specifically to mentor women; - £2m given to Rural Development Networks

7 What we have done: last 2 years Changing Culture and removing barriers LGB&T action plans – first ever cross-Government action plans: tackling homophobic bullying in schools, improving our response rate to hate crime, enabling civil partnerships on religious premises LGB&T Sports Charter: signed by 40+ National Governing Bodies Internationally – tackling barriers on LGB&T (first ever Council of Europe action) and VAWG Access to elected office – just launched new programme of support for disabled people standing for elections Older People – implemented legislation to ban discrimination in goods facilities and services (GFS); new signposting service on insurance launched Body Confidence: support for parents and schools

8 What we have done: last 2 years Simplification, reform and support Equality Act 2010 – implemented almost all of the Act; – Age discrimination in GFS commenced in October 2012 –Active stewardship of the Act EHRC reform –set out a clear reform programme –worked to get basics right (fewer interims, better controls) Setting up new Equality Advisory and Support Service Equality Strategy and one year on report

9 Looking forward – the next 9 months Maximising womens contribution Womens Business Council –Looking at life cycle –Reporting Spring 2013 Legislation on Flexible Working, Shared Parental Leave and Equal Pay Audits Childcare Review – to report in Autumn 2012 Women on Boards – 2 years on report in Spring 2013 Think Act Report – 2 years on report in September 2013

10 Looking forward – the next 9 months Changing Culture and Removing Barriers Equal Civil Marriage (gay marriage): consultation response by December 2012 Embedding Sports Charter Sectoral roundtables on body confidence Reports on LGB and Transgender Action Plans

11 Looking forward – the next 9 months Promoting Simplification, Reform and Support Implementing Red Tape Challenge package simplifying Equality Act Reviewing Public Sector Equality Duty Continuing with EHRC reforms: new Chair/Board; budget review; legislative changes New programmes to help SMEs

12 Red Tape Challenge – Equality Act 2010 Series of minor repeals Socio-economic duty Third party harassment Obtaining information provisions around employment disputes Wider recommendations for employment tribunals (but introducing new provisions for tribunals to require gender pay audits where appropriate)

13 Reform of the EHRC Package of reforms is designed to: clarify the EHRCs remit improve its financial and operational performance strengthen its leadership and governance Legislative changes: repealing vague and unnecessary duties and powers, focus on core equality and human rights functions. Appointments – new Chair, Baroness Onora ONeill; also recruiting a smaller board, with stronger business and corporate governance skills, to provide effective strategic leadership and accountability. Comprehensive Budget Review – working in partnership with the EHRC to conduct a joint review of the level of funding that it needs – will be agreed shortly.

14 Equal Civil Marriage (gay marriage) Will publish consultation response by December 2012 Largest ever public consultation – 228,000 responses Was focussed on how this would be done, not if Complexities around continuing with civil partnerships, use of religious premises, use of the word marriage in other legislation, recognition abroad, etc Wide variety of responses – GEO has read them all – lessons for the rest of Government on this

15 Longer-term opportunities and challenges Growth: maximising talents of all Spending Review : understanding equality implications Joined-up working : getting Departmental ownership Social Justice : building on joint work to help people facing persistent disadvantage Maintaining a strong international profile

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