Glasgow City Council is the largest local authority in Scotland, employing just under 19,000 people to help deliver essential services to the city and its 600,000 residents. These services include; schools, roads, libraries, museums, parks, planning, cleansing, the full range of social care for young and old and many other responsibilities.
Equality and Diversity
To ensure that equality is considered at all levels of service delivery and decision making, the Council Family Group has agreed the following Statement of Intent for Equality that sets out its policy approach.
Glasgow City Council will not tolerate inequality and discrimination in the city and will take action to address the underlying causes and support its most vulnerable citizens. In particular, the Council will work to eradicate hostility, prejudice and violence that continue to be manifested against particular groups.
The Council will do this by delivering its Equality Outcomes and by a commitment to the following two themes that underpin the Outcomes:
• Promoting behaviour change to reduce and eradicate prejudice, hate crime and gender-based violence; and
• Reducing prejudice of all kinds through a focus on prevention and raising awareness.
The experience of inequality and its impact on life experience is complex. Some people may fit within a protected characteristic but may not define themselves that way. Similarly, other people may define themselves by more than one protected characteristic and experience multiple inequalities and discrimination. It is important that protected characteristics are not each viewed separately, but that the connections and their collective impact are considered. Socio-economic status also increases gaps in equality. For example, there is evidence that people with low income have poorer physical and mental health; people living in the most income deprived areas have a healthy life expectancy that is, on average, ten years lower than those living in the most affluent communities.
To mitigate the effects of inequality, Glasgow City Council is committed to delivering its Equality Outcomes within a policy framework that ensures that the Council is:
• Mainstreaming equality in all aspects of policy development and decision making, thereby demonstrating leadership
• Embedding equality impact assessments into policy, service planning and decision making
• Contributing to the development and use of a robust evidence base, which identifies the underlying causes of inequality and supports the activity by which these are addressed
• Actively engaging with communities in order to understand their perspectives, concerns and priorities
• Using the framework provided by the Equality Act 2010 and the specific duties set by the Scottish Government to mainstream equality within the day to day work of the Council and in working with our Community Planning Partners
The Equality Act 2010 contained a new stipulation that public authorities must publish a set of Equality Outcomes. The ten Equality Outcomes 2013 to 2017 form the basis of equality work by the Council Family Group and reflect the priorities identified in consultation with equality groups.
The Equality Outcomes cover the following areas:
• Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, disabled, religious, faith and black and ethnic minority communities have increased confidence to report hate crime and it is dealt with appropriately
• Sectarian-based prejudice is reduced through continued efforts to change young people’s attitudes
• Survivors of, and those at risk of, gender-based violence or other targeted abuse are well-supported
• Promoting diversity in the local economy
• More people enter supported employment, education or training
• An increased number of apprentices and work placement recipients secure sustained employment
• Vulnerable people have the support and information they need to access the benefits to which they are entitled
• Disabled people are supported to live independently
• More disabled people are participating in physical activity
• Employees feel they are more
More on GCC’s Equality Outcomes
To govern equality in service delivery, executive and scrutiny decision-making arrangements are in place. All scrutiny and policy development committees have embedded equality in their remits. Reports to committee regularly highlight equality issues through the inclusion of an equality check on all committee report templates. This check is linked to the Equality Impact Assessment process and must be signed off by a Head of Service.
The Council has appointed an Executive Member for Equalities, who chairs the Strategic Equality Group (a meeting of senior officers from across the Council Family Group). At an operational level, an officer group with representatives from all services and ALEOs is responsible for coordinating the Council Family Group response to the Equality Act 2010. Policy links are also made between the Glasgow Community Planning Partnership Equality Working Group.