Basildon Council is actively committed to promoting inclusion and diversity as a community leader and advocate, as a service provider and as an employer.
We will integrate inclusion, equality and diversity best practice into service provision and employment as well as ensure that community cohesion is addressed as one of our key responsibilities.
We aim to ensure equality of access to services and service delivery, recognising and addressing the different needs of all our customers in keeping with the requirements of the Equality Act 2010.
The Equality Act 2010 came into force on 1 October 2010 and brings together over 116 separate pieces of legislation into one single Act. Combined, they make up a new Act that will provide a legal framework to protect the rights of individuals and advance equality of opportunity for all.
The Act covers nine Protected Characteristics. Basildon Council also looks at other elements which include socio-economic status, carers, part -time workers, health and Human Rights.
The Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) is supported by" specific duties" to assist public bodies like Basildon Council to achieve the aims of the general duty.
Under the specific duties, the Council must:
- Publish equalities information to demonstrate its compliance with the Equality Duty by the 31st January 2012 and then annually after that; and
- Develop and publish equality objectives by 6 April 2012 and then every four years.
Downloadable document: .
Inclusion and Diversity Objectives 2016-2020
Basildon Council is actively committed to promoting inclusion and diversity as a community leader and advocate, as a service provider and as an employer. The Council will actively promote inclusion and diversity through its core business and work to ensure that no person or group of people living, working or visiting the Borough will be directly or indirectly discriminated against.
- Objective 1 - Providing accessibility to Council services
- Objective 2 - Fostering good relations by working with partners to help build a strong sense of community belonging within neighbourhoods
- Objective 3 - Encouraging communities to play their part in contributing to the pride of the borough and encouraging civic responsibility, so that the contributions of individuals or groups to the community is properly valued
- Objective 4 - Deal with discrimination, if and when it arises in the workplace, and promote equality of opportunity by ensuring that the Council treats people fairly and equally as an employer, so all staff have the opportunity to achieve their aspirations regardless of who they are.
Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED)
The PSED also requires the Council to have 'due regard' which means consciously thinking about the three aims of the general duty as part of the decision‑making process and applying them to the 9 protected characteristics. The three aims are:
- Eliminating unlawful discrimination harassment and victimisation
- Advancing equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not
- Fostering good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not. Fostering good relations is about tackling prejudice and promoting understanding between people from different groups.
The second aim (advancing equality of opportunity) involves, in particular having due regard to the need to:
- Remove or minimise disadvantages suffered by people due to their protected characteristics
- Take steps to meet the needs of people with certain protected characteristics where these are different from the needs of other people. Meeting different needs includes (among other things) taking steps to take account of disabled people's disabilities
- Encourage people with certain protected characteristics to participate in public life or in other activities where their participation is disproportionately low.
Service Impact Assessments
Compliance with the general equality duty may involve treating some people more favourably than others.
This means that consideration of equality issues must influence the decisions reached by public bodies - in how they act as employers; how they develop, evaluate and review policy; how they design, deliver and evaluate services, and how they commission and procure from others.
Basildon Council uses Inclusion and Diversity - Service Impact Assessments to ensure that we meet the requirements of the general duty.